On Thursday, the Russian Foreign Ministry stated that, if a peace agreement between Israeli and Palestinian people could be reached, Russia could acknowledge West Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
Russia does not officially acknowledge West Jerusalem as Israelâ€™s capital, according to the PNN, and, up until Thursday, has not made any statements as to their opinion on the status of West Jerusalem. This slight shift in Russiaâ€™s position, rather surprisingly, comes after they condemned the Israeliâ€™s decision to establish a new settlement for the Amona evacuees.
The statement said that â€śthe stalling of the Middle East peace process has created conditions for unilateral moves that undermine the potential for an internationally accepted solution to the Palestinian problem, under which two states â€“ Israel and Palestine â€“ could live in peace and security with each other and with their neighbors. We reaffirm our commitment to the UN-approved principles for a Palestinian-Israeli settlement, which include the status of East Jerusalem as the capital of the future Palestinian state. At the same time, we must state that, in this context, we view West Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.â€ť
Finally, Russia said that a peaceful solution to the conflict between Israelis and Palestinians can only be reached in direct negotiations between the two.
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Chris Carlson is a student of religion at Mount Mercy University, United States, and has been a regular volunteer with the IMEMC since 2013. He assisted in providing extensive coverage of the 2014 Israeli military offensive on the Gaza Strip, and continues into the present day, with the issues at hand. He can be reached via email at c h r i s @ i m e m c . o r g.