"From the beginning, we've perceived the Australian government’s decision to recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital as one wherein petty domestic politics steer irresponsible policies that contradict world peace and security. In fact, the reference to West Jerusalem in their announcement reflects Australia's inability to go ahead as was previously announced", Erekat said in a statement.
Erekat noted that Australia's government "has done nothing to advance the two-state solution" for the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, as it has refused to recognise Palestine as a state and continued to trade with Israeli settlements. According to the official, by planning to open a trade office in Jerusalem, Australia is in violation of UN Security Council (UNSC) resolution 478, which calls on countries to withdraw diplomatic missions from the city.
In May, the United States relocated its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem prompting the outrage of the Muslim world. Brazil, the Czech Republic, Guatemala, and Honduras have also recognised Jerusalem as the Israeli capital.
Meanwhile, the United Nations has urged the organisation's member states to refrain from moving diplomatic missions to Jerusalem until the city’s legal status is settled.