Israel prepares for inauguration of US embassy in Jerusalem

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Jerusalem : A day before the opening ceremony of the new US embassy in Jerusalem that sparked off Palestinian protests, preparations in Israel were on in full swing on Sunday for the event.

US President Donald Trump’s daughter Ivanka, his senior adviser, and son-in-law Jared Kushner, as well as Secretary of Treasury Steven Mnuchin will lead the US delegation.

The Israeli foreign ministry said that 86 foreign ambassadors to Israel were invited to the opening ceremony taking place on Monday. About 40 of them have accepted the invitation, Xinhua reported.

Four European countries — Austria, the Czech Republic, Romania and Hungary — have confirmed their participation although the European Union opposes the relocation.

At the start of the weekly cabinet meeting, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said the relocation would be “a truly historic thing”.

Thousands of police officers were deployed throughout the Jerusalem districts to thwart any Palestinian protests and riots.

Additionally, police officers will stand in a “human wall” between the neighbourhood of Arnona, where the new embassy is located, and the Palestinian Sur Baher, the police said.

On December 16, 2017, Trump recognised Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, in a move that triggered new violence in the region.

The Palestinians want East Jerusalem as the capital of their future state. Following Trump’s move, they said the US cannot be considered as a fair peace broker in the Middle East.

Published on: May 13, 2018 at 18:04 IST

IANS

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