Russia Refuses to Move Embassy to Jerusalem

Al-Aqsa compound in East Jerusalem. (Photo: via Twitter)

Russia has refused to move its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, despite previously recognizing the west of the city as Israel’s capital. The announcement was made yesterday by Russia’s Ambassador to Israel, Anatoly Viktorov, through the TASS news outlet.

Viktorov explained:

“The issue of transferring the Russian Embassy to Jerusalem is off the agenda. Russia is committed to the international legal framework concerning Jerusalem, including corresponding United Nations Security Council resolutions.”

Such resolutions condemn Israel’s actions in the Holy City. Jerusalem was declared to be a corpus separatum, to be run under an international administration, under the 1947 UN Partition Plan, but Jewish paramilitary groups still went ahead and took control of the west of the city in the 1948 “war of independence”; Israel then occupied the east during the Six Day War of 1967.

Russia’s announcement will be greeted with frustration in Israel given that Moscow has previously recognized part of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. In 2017, the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement that “we [Russia] view West Jerusalem as the capital of Israel,” Arutz Sheva reported, noting that it stopped short of naming the whole city as the country’s capital.

(MEMO, PC, Social Media)

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