Jerusalem is a land claimed as holy by nearly every religious group in the world. Due to its sensitive nature, America has long kept its embassy in Israel in Tel Aviv, officially refusing to recognize such a holy site as the nation’s political capitol. However, this week, President Donald Trump announced that the American embassy would move to Jerusalem – drawing condemnation around the world for such a dangerous decision.
According to the Associated Press, Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh said this decision “breaks red lines” for his group. Although Hamas has been labeled a terrorist group by the United States, it is considered a party that is essential in any peace negotiations. He added that this move would “ignite the spark of rage against the occupation,” in an ominous warning.
Even Pope Francis urged “everyone’s commitment to respect the city’s status quo, in conformity with the pertinent United Nations Resolutions.”
“My thoughts go to Jerusalem and I cannot keep silent my deep concern for the situation that has been created in the past days,” the pope said. “I pray to the Lord that its identity is preserved and strengthened for the benefit of the Holy Land, the Middle East and the whole world and that wisdom and prudence prevail to prevent new elements of tension from being added to a global context already convulsed by so many cruel conflicts.”
Not everybody was critical, however. “While President Trump recognizes that the status of Jerusalem is a highly sensitive issue, he does not think it will be resolved by ignoring the simple truth that Jerusalem is home to Israel’s legislature, its supreme court and the prime minister, and as such is the capital of Israel,” one official said. “Delaying the recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel has done nothing to achieve peace for more than two decades.”
“The difference between President Trump and past presidents, because they’ve all promised the same thing with respect to moving the embassy to Jerusalem, is that this president will actually do it,” added spokeswoman Kellyanne Conway.