Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) President Morton A. Klein released the following statement:
ZOA thanks former Secretary of State Michael Pompeo for confirming during a Jewish Insider interview that it would be illegal, unnecessary, counterproductive, and would send the wrong signal to the Palestinian Arabs if the Biden administration re-opens the consulate in Jerusalem, catering to Palestinian Arabs.
Indeed, ZOA has repeatedly pointed out that a U.S. “Palestinian Arab” consulate in Jerusalem would enable the Palestinian Authority (PA) to violate the Oslo accords (which prohibit the PA from carrying on foreign relations); would violate the Jerusalem Embassy Act; would be a discriminatory, diplomatic insult and an attack on Israel’s sovereignty; would attack Israel’s rights to the Jewish people’s eternal holiest city, Jerusalem; and would boost dangerous efforts to divide and claim Jerusalem for a Palestinian Arab terror state’s capital. (See “Action Alert: ZOA Opposes Re-Opening a U.S. “Palestinian Arab” Consulate in Jerusalem,” Aug. 23, 2021; and ZOA analysis of nominee Tom Nides’ confirmation hearing, Sept. 27, 2021.)
Former U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman has likewise explained that re-opening a U.S. consulate in Jerusalem “would be illegal because the Jerusalem Embassy Act of 1995, passed overwhelmingly by both the U.S. House and the Senate, provides that ‘Jerusalem should remain an undivided city.’”
ZOA appreciates that Secretary Pompeo also noted during his interview that: “We don’t have consulates in the same city we have embassies anywhere in the world.”
ZOA has likewise long pointed out that a separate “Palestinian Arab” consulate would discriminate against Israel, and treat Israel as a second-class society, because the U.S. has no separate consulate operating in the capital city of any other country where the U.S. has an embassy. The United States moreover has no consulate serving another entity or group in any other country with which the U.S. maintains diplomatic relations.
Secretary Pompeo further wisely explained that reopening the consulate would “signal to [the Palestinian Arabs that it’s] back to business as usual, back to the kleptocracy, and ‘pay to slay’ and all the horrors that the Palestinian leadership and the West Bank [has] imposed on its own people as well.”
ZOA has similarly explained that re-opening a “Palestinian Arab” consulate would reward the terrorist Palestinian Authority dictatorship for continuing to pay Arab terrorists huge rewards to murder Jews and Americans, for inciting hatred and murder against Jews and Christians, and for filing illegitimate, false claims against Israel in international bodies―all in violation of the PA’s signed Oslo agreements.
ZOA strongly urges President Biden to refrain from illegally re-opening a U.S. consulate in Jerusalem.