Netanyahu says Jerusalem ‘eternal, undivided capital,” quiet on embassy move

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu takes the podium.

“It’s a pleasure to address you from Jerusalem, the eternal, undivided capital of the State of Israel,” he says, to strong applause.

“Why do I say Jerusalem will never be divided again? Because I remember what it was like when it was divided,” the prime minister says.

Admitting he was born in Tel Aviv and came to the city at the age of two days old, he says the city was “divided, wounded, besieged really. Besieged in the sense that it enclosed on all sides.”

He is recalling the snipers on the walls of the Old City. “It was a wounded, divided city that had no future,” he says.

And he remembers the Six Day War and the moment when Motta Gur said “the Temple Mount is in our hands.”

“It was like a lightning bolt — I can’t describe it any other way,” he says.

“We came back. We united the city…And then we proceeded to do two great things. We ensured that Jerusalem was a free city for all,” he says, referring to “unfettered, untouched” access to all holy sites for all religions.

Without Israel, the city “would descend into horrible sectarian violence,” he says.

“There’s another small thing we did… we also guaranteed the freedom of markets,” he adds. The prime minister says he wants to see the entrepreneurship and Israeli innovation spread through the region and bring peace.

He thanks the US for this “brilliant” gesture, and says the US has no better friend than Israel and vice versa.

He notably doesn’t repeat his previous calls fro the United Staes to move its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

— Marissa Newman

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