US Vice President Mike Pence on Monday announced that his country's embassy in Jerusalem will open by the end of 2019. This despite worldwide condemnation of Trump administration's decision to shift the embassy from Tel Aviv.
The United Nations (UN) had voted 128-9 in December of last year to reject Donald Trump's decision to recognise Jerusalem as Israel's capital. The US President in a speech in Washington had opened a Pandora's box by announcing US recognition for Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. A decision which is expected to further inflame simmering ties between Israel and Palestine, the move was criticised the world over - forcing Trump to threaten to cut financial aid to countries which 'voted against American interest.'
Pence's recent announcement is expected to further infuriate the global community - especially Muslim countries that back Palestine's claims on Jerusalem, a city considered holy by Muslims, Christians and Jews.
What is also of possible concern is the US' blatant disregard for the UN resolution. Nikki Haley, US ambassador to the UN, had said after the voting last month that her country will carry on with plans of shifting its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. "America will put our embassy in Jerusalem. That is what American people want us to do. And it is the right thing to do. No vote in the United Nations will make any difference to that," she had said."But this vote will make a difference to how Americans look at the UN and how we look at countries who disrespect us in the UN."
India too was one of the 128 countries supporting the resolution to reject US decision on Jerusalem. However, Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu's visit to India earlier this month showcased solid ties between the two countries.