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Israel will not accept reopening of US consulate in Jerusalem

Leader of Israel’s Tikva Hadasha (New Hope) party, Gideon Sa'ar near Tel Aviv, on 8 February 2021 [GIL COHEN-MAGEN/AFP/Getty Images]
Israel’s Justice Minister, Gideon Sa'ar in Tel Aviv, on 8 February 2021 [GIL COHEN- MAGEN/AFP/Getty Images]

Israeli Justice Minister Gideon Sa'ar said yesterday that the Israeli government will not allow the reopening of the US Consulate in occupied East Jerusalem to offer services to Palestinians, Sama news reported.

Sa'ar's remarks came following questions by reporters ahead of a potential visit by US President Joe Biden to Israel. Biden's administration had promised to reopen the consulate which was closed by his predecessor Donald Trump in 2019.

CNN reported that Biden is considering visiting East Jerusalem during his visit to Israeli, but Sa'ar denied knowledge of this.

An Israeli official told CNN on Monday that Biden might visit Al-Makassed Hospital in Jerusalem, which offers medical services to Palestinians from occupied Jerusalem, the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

Previously, Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett rejected the American plan to reopen the consulate. "The government under my leadership has repeatedly clarified its position that there is no place for a Palestinian consulate in Jerusalem." Bennett said.

READ: PA calls on EU to pressure Israel to stop its violations against Palestinians

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