Israel’s leaders responds to the U.S. Jerusalem decision

December 7, 2017 by J-Wire Newsdesk
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Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has expressed Israel’s gratitude to U.S. President Donald Trump for declaring Jerusalem as the country’s capital.

 

 

Benjamin Netanyahu said: “This is a historic day. It’s been the capital of Israel for nearly 70 years. Jerusalem has been the focus of our hopes, our dreams, our prayers for three millennia. Jerusalem has been the capital of the Jewish people for 3,000 years.

It was here that our temples stood, our kings ruled, our prophets preached.

From every corner of the earth, our people yearned to return to Jerusalem, to touch its golden stones, to walk its hallowed streets. So it’s rare to be able to speak of new and genuine milestones in the glorious history of this city

Yet today’s pronouncement by President Trump is such an occasion. We’re profoundly grateful for the President for his courageous and just decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and to prepare for the opening of the US embassy here. This decision reflects the President’s commitment to an ancient but enduring truth, to fulfilling his promises and to advancing peace.

The President’s decision is an important step towards peace, for there is no peace that doesn’t include Jerusalem as the capital of the State of Israel. I share President Trump’s commitment to advancing peace between Israel and all of our neighbours, including the Palestinians. And we will continue to work with the President and his team to make that dream of peace come true. I call on all countries that seek peace to join the United States in recognising Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and to move their embassies here.

I also want to make clear: there will be no change whatsoever to the status quo at the holy sites. The Jewish people and the Jewish state will be forever grateful. This has been our goal from Israel’s first day

Israel will always ensure freedom of worship for Jews, Christians, and Muslims alike. President Trump, thank you for today’s historic decision to recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.”

President Donald Trump and President Reuven Rivlin

President Reuven Rivlin: “I congratulate President Donald Trump on his announcement of US recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, and on the expected move of the American Embassy to Jerusalem. There is no more fitting or beautiful gift, as we approach 70 years of the State of Israel’s independence.”

He added, “After the jubilee – fifty years after the reunification of the city – the time has come to bring tranquility to Jerusalem, and to see hope blossom in the capital of Israel, the place where pilgrims come from around the world. For thousands of years the Jewish people have looked up to Jerusalem, and prayed, and dreamed of the city.

The recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, and the relocation of all embassies to the city, is a landmark in the recognition of the right of the Jewish people to our land, and a milestone on our road to peace – peace for all the residents of Jerusalem, and the whole region.

Jerusalem has many faces – it is a holy city and a modern city, which allows freedom of religion for all faiths. A city of history and of innovation, a microcosm of all our abilities to live together.”

President Rivlin stressed, “Jerusalem is not, and never will be, an obstacle to peace for those who want peace. As it is written, ‘Pray for the peace of Jerusalem, may all that love her prosper, may there be peace in her quarters and palaces’.”

Chairman of the Executive of The Jewish Agency for Israel Natan Sharansky added: “President Trump’s highly important statement constitutes a major milestone in the history of Jerusalem. The legitimacy of Jerusalem’s status as Israel’s capital is undeniable historically, nationally, and morally, yet at a time when some seek to undermine the legitimacy of the Zionist enterprise in its entirety, the president’s clear words are most welcome and will contribute to strengthening the international recognition and legitimacy of Israel’s capital.

“Jerusalem has forever been the center and capital of the Jewish people. The yearning to return to it and establish it were at the very core of Jewish identity everywhere. This common desire of Jews throughout the generations was and continues to be the basis of the Jewish people’s mutual solidarity in Israel and the Diaspora. Due to the success of the Zionist effort, Jerusalem has become the capital of the State of Israel and, as President Trump noted, it functions fully and officially as a capital city, regardless of whether or not it is granted the formal recognition of foreign bodies.”

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