(March 8, 2019 / JNS) Palestinian leader Saeb Erekat called for boycotting the updated U.S. embassy in Israel, which officially absorbed the U.S. Consulate General earlier this week.
Erekat said on Thursday that the international community should “not to engage in any kind of formal relationship or collaboration” with the embassy, which now includes the Palestinian affairs unit.
The two entities merged in a decision that “was driven by our global efforts to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of our diplomatic engagements and operations,” said U.S. State Department deputy spokesperson Robert Palladino in a statement. “It does not signal a change of U.S. policy on Jerusalem, the West Bank or the Gaza Strip. As the president has stated, the United States continues to take no position on final status issues, including boundaries or borders.”
“The specific boundaries of Israeli sovereignty in Jerusalem are subject to final-status negotiations between the parties,” he continued. “The administration remains fully committed to efforts to achieve a lasting and comprehensive peace that offers a brighter future to Israel and the Palestinians.”
The embassy moved from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem in May after U.S. President Donald Trump recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s capital in December 2017.