Australia may also recognize East Jerusalem as future Palestinian capital

Israel praised Canberra’s surprise talk of recognition, embassy move, but Morrison’s distinctions on Jerusalem seem closer to Russia’s position than to Trump’s

Prime Minister Scott Morrison, left,, with Minister for Foreign Affairs Marise Payne

Raphael Ahren writes ion Times of Israel, “Israel has applauded the news that Australia is considering recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and moving its embassy there. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke on Monday evening to the country’s new Prime Minister Scott Morrison and thanked him for his surprising announcement. “Jerusalem is, always has been and always will be the capital of Israel, and recognition of this is recognition of an indisputable fact,” Israel’s embassy in Canberra said in an official statement.”

“But a closer look at the joint statement Morrison and his foreign minister, Marise Payne, issued on Tuesday shows that Australia’s potential recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, if it actually happens, would extend only to the western part of the city, and would include the recognition of its eastern part as the capital of a future Palestinian state.”

Canberra “will carefully examine the arguments put forward by Australia’s former Ambassador to Israel, Dave Sharma, that we should consider recognising Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, without prejudice to its final boundaries, while acknowledging East Jerusalem as the expected capital of a future Palestinian state,” the joint statement reads.”…Whether Australia will end up recognizing Jerusalem — or West Jerusalem — is still open. Local media is suggesting Morrison was merely playing up Dave Sharma’s arguments to help the former Israel envoy win his upcoming by-elections in Wentworth, a district near Sydney that is home to many Jews. After the October 20 election, Morrison’s enthusiasm for the idea might fade. (more…)

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