President Trump’s announcement of the United States’ recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel sparked wide international criticism and protest, and general approval in Israel. In response, the Palestinian Authority took to the United Nations Security Council where a resolution reiterating the UN’s position on Jerusalem as disputed territory was vetoed by the United States. Consequently, the UN’s General Assembly adopted overwhelmingly a resolution declaring “null and void” any actions intended to “alter Jerusalem’s character, status, or demographic composition.”
Back in Palestine, Jerusalem remains a deeply divided city, and Trump’s declaration fueled popular discontent that has manifested in frequent protests, civil disobedience, and wide condemnation. Palestinians no longer accept the United States as the sole mediator for negotiations with Israel, and have attempted to internationalize the negotiation process.
In this Majlis, Anas Iqtait, PhD Scholar at CAIS returning recently from Palestine after spending five months as a Research Fellow with Birzeit University, will engage in a conversation on the consequences and implications of Trump’s decision. Iqtait will consider questions of legal status, regional stability and security, prospects for lasting peace, and the status and rights of Palestinians in East Jerusalem.
Anas Iqtait is a Research Scholar at the Centre for Arab and Islamic Studies at the Australian National University. He has previously worked in Palestine with the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), Oxfam, and the Korean International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) and served as a Research Fellow at Birzeit University in 2017.
The below articles are suggested background readings on the topic. They are not required for participation, rather, they are provided for those who would like to prepare for our discussion.
The Status of Jerusalem by the United Nations: http://www.un.org/Depts/dpi/palestine/ch12.pdf
East Jerusalem: Key Humanitarian Concerns by the United Nations: https://www.ochaopt.org/sites/default/files/ocha_opt_Jerusalem_FactSheet...