Russia recognizes western Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, eastern Jerusalem for Palestinian state

Russia said that just as it believes eastern Jerusalem is the capital of a future Palestinian state, it views the western half of the city as the capital of Israel.“We reaffirm our commitment to the U.N.-approved principles for a Palestinian-Israeli settlement, which include the status of East Jerusalem as the capital of the future Palestinian state,” the statement said. “At the same time, we must state that in this context we view West Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.”

The statement deals with Russian concerns over the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and expresses concern that “Palestine and Israel have not held political negotiations for nearly three years, and the situation on the ground has been deteriorating.”

“Moscow reaffirms its support for the two-state solution as an optimal option that meets the national interests of the Palestinian and Israeli people, both of whom have friendly relations with Russia, and the interests of all other countries in the region and the international community as a whole,” it said.

The Jerusalem Post reported that the recognition of western Jerusalem as Israel’s capital will take effect immediately and not be contingent on the establishment of a Palestinian state with a capital in eastern Jerusalem.

Russia’s ambassador to Israel will meet with Foreign Ministry officials in the coming days to discuss the announcement and what it means, according to the Post, which also reported that there is currently no intention of moving Russia’s embassy to Jerusalem.

source JTA