Ambassadors from Austria, Czech Republic, Romania, and Hungary have snubbed an official E.U. diktat and chosen to attend a function in honor of Monday’s official inauguration of the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem.
Their decision to attend came after Viktor Orbán’s Hungary, supported by the Czech Republic and Romania, blocked a E.U. motion condemning President Donald Trump’s decision to move the U.S. embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to the capital.
The three countries — part of the Visegrad group of conservative, pro-sovereignty countries within the European Union — blocked the joint statement led by Emmanuel Macron’s France, which was supposed to “embarrass and isolate” the Trump administration internationally.
Now the ambassadors of four dissenting E.U. nations will join an offical reception Sunday at the Israel Foreign Ministry in honor of the embassy move. This is in spite of the E.U. reiterating its opposition to the decision.
EU & its member states will continue to respect the international consensus on Jerusalem embodied in, inter alia UNSCR 478 including on the location of their diplomatic representations until the final status of Jerusalem is resolved https://t.co/laEmiYFYmh https://t.co/j1TwNAwID0
— EU in Israel (@EUinIsrael) May 11, 2018
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu — bolstered by President Trump’s withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal — opened a special cabinet meeting at Jerusalem’s Bible Lands Museum by again lauding the embassy move.
“Jerusalem is mentioned in the Bible approximately 650 times,” Netanyahu said. “The reason is simple: For over 3,000 years it has been the capital of our people, and only of our people.”
Deputy Minister for Diplomacy Michael Oren praised the dissident Czech Republic, Romania and Hungary for blocking the E.U.’s planned condemnations of the U.S. move, saying the EU should be “ashamed” of itself.
Thank you Czech Republic, Romania, and Hungary for blocking EU’s censure of U.S. for moving its embassy to Jerusalem—the spiritual focus of the Jewish people for 3,000 years, the capital of the region’s only democracy for 70. These 3 nations should be proud and the EU ashamed.
— Michael Oren (@DrMichaelOren) May 12, 2018
The new U.S. Embassy will be officialy inaugurated in the capital’s Arnona neighborhood.
U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman will preside over tomorrow’s dedication ceremony. U.S. Deputy Secretary John J. Sullivan, Secretary of Treasury Steven Mnuchin, Senior Advisor Jared Kushner, Advisor Ivanka Trump, and Special Representative for International Negotiations Jason Greenblatt will represent the U.S. at the event.
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