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Visiting Democrats push support for reopening US consulate in Jerusalem

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A group of visiting Democratic lawmakers expressed to Prime Minister Naftali Bennett on Friday their support for US President Joe Biden’s plan to reopen the American consulate in Jerusalem, which served as a de facto mission to the Palestinians.

The matter is gearing up to become a point of conflict between Washington and Jerusalem, which opposes the measure.

“In our meetings today in Israel with Prime Minister Bennett and other officials, we stressed the importance we place on reopening our consulate in Jerusalem to better serve Palestinians. This consulate was open for over 100 years before being cruelly shuttered by President Trump,” tweeted Sen. Chris Murphy who is in Israel as part of a Congressional delegation to the Middle East along with three other progressive senators, Chris Van Hollen, Jon Ossoff and Richard Blumenthal.

Adding on to Murphy’s tweet, Van Hollen wrote on Twitter, “Yes, we had good meetings and raised this issue. It was also a commitment @POTUS made and important that he keep his word, follow through, and reverse Trump’s harmful decision.”

Trump moved to close the consulate in 2019 and integrate it with the embassy that had been moved to Jerusalem from Tel Aviv, after he recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. Trump described it as an efficiency measure, but it was seen as a de facto downgrading of ties with the Palestinians.

Much of the staff at the historic mission on Agron Street have continued doing the same jobs at the same........

© The Times of Israel

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