In terms of end times events the following announcement is significant both in terms of the act itself and the timing. Well ahead of schedule, the new US Embassy in Jerusalem will open in May 2018 in celebration of Israel’s 70th anniversary of independence. Already the Arab nations have responded with “threats of a regional explosion”.
“President Trump’s decision to move the United States Embassy to Jerusalem on the coming Independence Day in May follows his historic declaration in December to recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital,” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in a statement issued by the Israeli Embassy in Washington on Friday.
The May opening marks a significant acceleration. During his historic address to the Knesset in January, Vice President Mike Pence said the embassy would open by the end of 2019. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who signed off on the security plan for the new embassy on Thursday, had said it would take years.
The Arab world responded in anger to the news that the US embassy will be moved to Jerusalem this coming May, coinciding with Israel’s 70th Independence Day.
The Palestinian Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Saturday condemned “in the strongest terms” the American announcement regarding acceleration of the embassy move, saying they considered it “a provocative aggression against the Palestinian people.”
Palestinian Foreign Minister Riad Malki (AP/Ivan Sekretarev)
The decision “is a direct aggression against the Palestinian people and their just and legitimate national rights, while at the same time rewarding the occupation for its violations and crimes, especially as it coincides with the anniversary of the Nakba [‘catastrophe’ in Arabic, referring to Israel’s independence] that afflicted the Palestinian people and is still ongoing, and encouraging it to continue to destroy any chance for peace based on a two-state solution,” the Ministry said in a statement.
HAMAS THREATENS A REGIONAL EXPLOSION
Hamas threatened to “bravely confront the plan to relocate the US embassy,” warning that it “will be the trigger that will detonate the whole area in the face of the Israeli occupation.”
ARAB LEAGUE – A NEW AND DANGEROUS EPISODE
Secretary General of the Arab League Ahmed Aboul Gheit said the US decision to move its embassy to Jerusalem on the 70th anniversary of the “Palestinian exodus, the Nakba,” is “likely going to undermine the last chance of peace and coexistence between the Israelis and the Palestinians.”