An ultra-Orthodox Jewish man stands in front of the U.S Embassy in Tel Aviv, Israel January 24, 2017. REUTERS/Baz Ratner
CAIRO – 26 December 2017: The U.S. embassy in Tel Aviv has bought The Diplomat Hotel located in East Jerusalem, in a move interpreted as the first practical procedure to move the American embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, according to Palestinian news agency Ma’an.
Israeli sources revealed to Ma’an that the Israeli Department of Immigration and Integration, affiliated with the Ministry of Aliyah and Integration, is operating from The Diplomat Hotel, too.
The Department of Immigration and Integration is responsible for helping new immigrants to integrate into the Israeli community.
“Buying this hotel by the American diplomatic mission in Jerusalem is deemed the first practical procedure of the American recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital city and moving the Israeli embassy from Tel Aviv,” the sources added.
Israeli Knesset member Ksenia Svetlova asserted that the American diplomatic mission had bought the hotel as a temporary solution until the new embassy is completely built.
Jerusalem’s Deputy Mayor Meir Turgeman told Israeli Radio that “American engineers have arrived in Jerusalem a week ago to supervise the construction plan of the permanent building of the American embassy in Jerusalem,” according to a Ma’an report.
In December 2016, the Israeli Haartz newspaper published a report stressing that “Kellyanne Conway said that Trump is determined to move the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem after he steps into the White House.”
On December 6, U.S. President Donald Trump recognized Jerusalem as the capital city of Israel and announced the relocation of the American embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. This decision was condemned and rejected by all Arab and Islamic countries as well as most of Western and Asian countries.
Hundreds of protesters took to the streets in different global cities and capitals to denounce the American announcement about Jerusalem.
On Sunday, Guatemalan President Jimmy Morales said he had given instructions to move the Central American country's embassy in Israel to Jerusalem as well, according to Reuters.
On December 19, Palestine’s Safa news agency revealed that Israel planned to inaugurate a synagogue near Al-Buraq Wall (Western Wall).
On December 21, the United Nations General Assembly overwhelmingly passed a non-binding resolution condemning Trump’s decision and called on states not to move their diplomatic missions to Jerusalem.