17:14 GMT +316 October 2019
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    Capital Question: Israeli Minister Slams Australia for Jerusalem 'Division'

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    On December 15 the Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced that Australia recognizes West Jerusalem as a capital of Israel, adding that Canberra "acknowledges the aspirations of the Palestinian people for a future state with its capital in East Jerusalem," thus abiding by the so-called two-state solution.

    Tzachi Hanegbi, the Israeli minister for regional cooperation, noted that Israel is not satisfied with the Australian decision to recognize West Jerusalem as the capital of Israel in conjunction with the acceptance of East Jerusalem as the capital of Palestine, according to the Guardian.

    "Australia is a deep and intimate friend of many years of Israel. We were happy to hear that it has an interest to clarify its recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital. But to our regret, within this positive news they made a mistake. There is no division between the east of the city and the west of the city. Jerusalem is one whole, united. Israel's control over it is eternal," said Hanegbi.

    READ MORE: Australia Recognises West Jerusalem as Israeli Capital

    The minister said that the Australian decision runs counter to Israel's claim to both sides of the city.

    "Our sovereignty will not be partitioned, nor undermined. And we hope Australia will soon find a way to fix the mistake it made," the Israeli minister concluded.

    Earlier the Australian PM Scott Morrison said that Australia recognizes West Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, remarking that Canberra will also recognize East Jerusalem as the capital of Palestine after the existing controversies will be settled on a two-state solution bases.

    Soon after the Morrison's statement, an Israeli official said that Canberra's move was "a step in the right direction, but we [Israelis] expected more,” according to the Times of Israel.

    READ MORE: Israeli Authorities Approve Expansion of US Embassy in Jerusalem – Reports

    The Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has not yet made statement in response to the gesture from Australia.

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    Tags:
    two-state solution, capital, recognition, Scott Morrison, Benjamin Netanyahu, Middle East, Jerusalem
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