Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu opened an exhibition at UN headquarters on Thursday about the alleged Jewish connection to the occupied city of Jerusalem, it has been reported. The idea for the exhibition originated with the Israeli Representative at the UN, Danny Danon, following US President Donald Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as the “eternal” capital of Israel.
During his opening speech, Netanyahu said that the Jewish connection to Jerusalem “is being denied by those seeking to erase the history of our people, our connection to our lands and our connection to our eternal capital Jerusalem.” He claimed that Jewish history in Jerusalem goes back some 3,000 years, noting that this was even before Christianity.
“We [Israeli officials] are changing the world,” he boasted, adding:
We are changing Israel’s position in the world and above all we are making it clear that we fight for the truth and for our rights. We also fight for security.
The UN has issued numerous resolutions reiterating that occupied Jerusalem is not part of Israel and it should be the capital of the future Palestine state. The 1947 UN Partition Plan, which Israel often cites as the legal justification for its existence and the occupation of Palestine, designated Jerusalem as a separate entity to be run by an international body. Israel ignored this and occupied West Jerusalem in 1948, and the Eastern half of the city in 1967.
In response to Trump’s announcement in December, the UN voted overwhelmingly against the recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and said that Trump’s move is “null and void”.
At the entrance of the exhibition hall, a disclaimer states: “The content of this exhibit is solely the responsibility of the sponsors. The holding of the exhibit in UN premises does not imply endorsement by the United Nations. Please direct any queries to the organisers.”