A senior official in the US State Department told senators on Wednesday that Zionist entity’s permission would be required before the United States could reopen its consulate in Al-Quds (Jerusalem) serving Palestinians.
US Deputy Secretary of State for Management and Resources Brian McKeon appeared before the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations to answer questions on a variety of issues. McKeon was asked by Senator Bill Hagerty, a Republican from Tennessee, about the potential reopening of that consulate.
“I just want to confirm something, on the record — is it your understanding that under US and international law the government of Israel would have to provide its affirmative consent before the United States could open or reopen the US consulate to the Palestinians in Jerusalem?” Hagerty asked McKeon.
“Or does the Biden administration believe it can move forward to establish a second US mission in the Israel capital city of Jerusalem without the consent of the government in Israel?”
McKeon replied: “Senator, that’s my understanding — that we need the consent of the host government to open any diplomatic facility.”
US President Joe Biden has pledged to reopen the consulate, but the issue has been a sticking point between the Zionist entity and the United States, as well as among some members of Congress. The consulate was shuttered by then-US president Donald Trump in 2019 and its staff was folded into the US embassy — which had been moved from Tel Aviv to Al-Quds (Jerusalem) a year earlier — in what the Palestinians view as a downgrading of their ties with the US.