LONDON – The United Kingdom’s Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson called on Thursday for US President Donald Trump to show leadership in order to push on with the peace process in the Middle East, after the latter recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
In a statement to the press at the Foreign Office, Johnson said Trump’s decision was unhelpful for the peace process but the US had the power to influence the region.
“I think, this decision having been announced by President Trump, the world would like to see some serious announcements by the US about how they see the Middle East peace process and how to bring the two sides together,” said Johnson.
“If we are going to have a move of the US embassy, then let’s also see some moves towards the long overdue resolution of the Middle East peace process,” he added.
Johnson said that the US was the “eminent power that can now show leadership,” and that he hoped the US administration would present policies and programs “to bring parties together.”
The diplomat said the UK government’s position had not changed and that the status of Jerusalem had to be determined by an agreement negotiated between Israel and the Palestinians.
He said recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel was “premature.”
Trump on Wednesday broke with international consensus in recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and ordering that the US embassy be moved there from Tel Aviv, an announcement that has been met with criticism from across the globe and led to increased tension in the region.
In making the announcement, Trump turned the US into the only country in the world to recognize Jerusalem as the Israeli capital.