Australia changed its former prime minister Scott Morrison’s decision to acknowledge West Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, saying that this matter should be settled through peace talks between Israel and the Palestinian people.
Australian Foreign Minister Penny Wong on Tuesday stated that the government had reconsidered Australia’s previous decision of recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and now come to the conclusion that this issue should be resolved as part of peace negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian people.
As per a Reuters report, Wong stated, “Australia is committed to a two-state solution in which Israel and a future Palestinian state coexist, in peace and security, within internationally recognized borders.”
She went on to say that Australia will always be a steadfast friend of Israel and Australia’s embassy will remain in Tel Aviv.
She also emphasized, “We will not waver in our support of Israel and the Jewish community in Australia. We are equally unwavering in our support of the Palestinian people, including humanitarian support.”
Foreign Minister Wong also stated that government ‘regrets’ the decision made by previous administrators.
Israel Prime Minister Yair Lapid, on the other hand, called Australia’s decision a “hasty response”.
He further added that Jerusalem is the eternal and united capital of Israel and nothing will ever change that.
“We can only hope that the Australian government manages other matters more seriously and professionally,” he added.
However, as per a France24 report, Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki called it a “correction of a mistake made by the previous government,” and added that Australia should now recognize the state of Palestine to stay loyal to its two-state commitment.
Former Australian prime minister Scott Morrison in 2018 declared that Australia recognized West Jerusalem as Israel’s capital but would not relocate its embassy there instantly.