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    The U.S. embassy in Jerusalem is "officially open." | Photo: Reuters

Published 9 May 2019

The United States embassy in Jerusalem in officially open, according to the U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. 

The United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced Wednesday that the country’s embassy in Jerusalem is “officially open” almost a year after the embassy building was inaugurated.

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Pompeo said that the residence of chief-of-mission was established in Jerusalem in March and finally the embassy is open.

The U.S. President Donald Trump announced his intention of moving the embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem in late 2017.

Jerusalem was occupied by Israel in 1967 and later annexed. The international community has not recognized this move. Israel considers Jerusalem as its capital and Palestinians also consider the eastern part of the holy city as the capital of a future Palestinian state.

The new U.S. embassy is seen by Palestinians and governments around the world who oppose the move, as supporting Israel’s illegal annexation of the historical city.

Pompeo said President Donald Trump’s decision was based on a U.S. Congress vote from 23 years ago in favor of moving the embassy to Jerusalem, but is just one in a line of the administration's pro-Israel stance toward the country accused of committing war crimes against Palestinians by the United Nations.

Earlier this year Trump recognized Israel’s sovereignty over Golan Heights. Israel occupied Golan Heights from Syria during 1967 Arab-Israeli War and two-thirds of the territory is occupied by Israel at present.

In 1981, the Israeli government unilaterally applied its own laws in the Golan Heights, a de facto annexation that the United Nations Security Council condemned in Resolution 497 as “null and void and without international legal effect.”

This week, a leaked draft of Trump’s Middle East 'peace plan' revealed that Palestinians will be left with almost no territory as Israel will annex all of its existing illegal settlements that accounts for 62 percent of the West Bank, according to the U.S. plan.

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