US embassy moves to Jerusalem — on Twitter

US embassy moves to Jerusalem — on Twitter

Ahead of upcoming relocation to capital, mission posts video showing account name change from USEmbassyTelAviv to USEmbassyJerusalem

Screen capture from video showing the US Embassy in Israel changing its Twitter handle to reflect its relocation to Jerusalem, May 9, 2018. (Twitter)
Screen capture from video showing the US Embassy in Israel changing its Twitter handle to reflect its relocation to Jerusalem, May 9, 2018. (Twitter)

In a symbolic gesture ahead of the relocation of the US embassy to Jerusalem, the mission changed its Twitter name Thursday from USEmbassyTelAviv to USEmbassyJerusalem.

The embassy posted a short video clip of the alteration being made to its official account with a message saying it was “still looking for a suitable header photo.”

The account’s Twitter handle is now @usembassyjlm.

An opening ceremony for the relocated embassy, which will move from Tel Aviv to the capital, is scheduled for May 14.

It was the second sign this week of the upcoming move, after Jerusalem municipal workers on Monday erected signposts reading “US Embassy” in Hebrew, Arabic, and English around the site, currently a US consular building, in the city’s Arnona neighborhood.

The embassy is to get a festive inauguration on Monday next week, to coincide with the 70th anniversary of the founding of the State of Israel.

Small in size, it will initially occupy part of the consular work space pending planning and construction of a purpose-built embassy, ​​a long-term project, according to the US State Department.

The US Consulate General in Jerusalem also posted a video Thursday saying that Washington was finally keeping its 1995 promise to move the embassy to Jersualem.

US President Donald Trump announced on December 6, 2017, that he was formally recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and moving the embassy to the city from Tel Aviv.

Trump’s unilateral decision delighted the Israelis and enraged the Palestinians, who want to make the eastern part of the city for the capital of a future state, and who say Trump’s decision ignores their demands. The Palestinians have effectively avoided any contact with US officials since the decision.

The question of Jerusalem is one of the thorniest of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Israel took control of East Jerusalem from Jordan in the 1967 Six-Day War and later annexed it.

Foreign embassies are currently located in Tel Aviv and its environs, as the international community has balked at recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, until the status of the city is set via a peace deal with the Palestinians.

Since Trump’s announcement, Guatemala and Paraguay have said they too will move their embassies to the capital.

Agencies contributed to this report.

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