Jerusalem mayor, outside White House, pleads with Trump to move the embassy

Nir Barkat thanks US president for ‘commitment and intent’ to recognize Jerusalem as capital of Israel

Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat outside the White house, December 2017 (Facebook screenshot)
Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat outside the White house, December 2017 (Facebook screenshot)

Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat made an impassioned appeal to US President Donald Trump asking him to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and to move the US embassy to the city.

In a video released on social media Monday, Barkat is seen standing in front of the White House, where he thanked Trump for his “commitment and intention to officially recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.”

The mayor described Jerusalem as “the beating heart and soul of the Jewish people for more than 3,000 years,” and said that recognizing it as the capital “will send a very clear message to the world that the United States stands with the Jewish people and the State of Israel.”

רגע לפני ההחלטה, שתפו את הקריאה לנשיא טראמפ לא לחשוש מאיומי הטרור ולהעביר את השגרירות לירושלים!As we await a decision, share this message to President Trump: Do not be deterred by threats of terror, move the US embassy to Jerusalem!

Posted by ‎Nir Barkat – ניר ברקת‎ on Monday, December 4, 2017

Barkat was leaving the US capital after what he described as “several productive days here in Washington” which included, “a number of events and meetings with senior US government officials and Jewish leaders.”

He told Trump not to allow himself to be pressured by others, but to make the right decision.

“In Jerusalem, we don’t cave to pressure and we don’t let threats or violence stop us from doing what is right,” he said. “President Trump, I encourage you to do the right thing: recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, and bring the US Embassy home to Jerusalem.”

US President Donald Trump makes a statement to the press upon his departure at the White House in Washington, DC, on December 4, 2017. (AFP PHOTO / JIM WATSON)

Trump has until Monday to sign a waiver delaying a move of the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem for six more months, though it seems likely he will disregard that deadline by a few days

Trump is expected to sign the waiver, but simultaneously give a speech Wednesday announcing that he formally recognizes Jerusalem as the Israeli capital — an action that is likely to infuriate Palestinians and upset other Arab nations, like Saudi Arabia and Jordan.

A Palestinian delegation visited the White House on Friday and warned Trump’s senior adviser and son-in-law Jared Kushner that such a move would lead to violence, end the peace process, and instigate a tide of regional instability.

Over the weekend, Kushner told the Saban Forum, a premier conference on the Middle East hosted each December by the Brookings Institution, that the president has yet to make up his mind on the matter.

“The president is going to make his decision,” he told his interviewer, the Israeli-American media mogul and Democratic donor Haim Saban. “He’s still looking at a lot of different facts.”

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