In a speech to the public, President Trump has declared that Jerusalem is the Capital of Israel. “Merely a recognition of reality.”
Major allies have announced concern at what would be one of boldest foreign policy moves of Trump’s tenure, the recognition of Jerusalem as the Capitol of Israel. The issue was a key talking point of the Trump campaign, but now that he has entered office things are not so simple. Many of the states in the Arabian region believe that Jerusalem sits upon territory stolen from Palestine. The State Department has been told to expect violent protest.
Proponents of Israel argue that modern Israeli territory was won in fair combat during a counterattack, following the surprise invasion of Israel by the Arab League in what came to be known as the Six-Day War. Palestinian supporters feel that they hold claim to the land and city by right of settlement, with the official position of the Palestinian National Authority being that Jerusalem should be declared an ‘open city’, a designation that would preclude Jerusalem from being declared Capitol of Israel.
The Jerusalem Embassy Act passed in 1995 declared that the capital must be moved by 1999, or the State Department will face harsh funding penalties. The President, however; is allowed to sign a six-month waiver on these penalties, and this waiver has been signed every six months since that time.