Australia Recognizes West Jerusalem

Australia Recognizes West Jerusalem


It’s unusual for an announcement by an international actor to leave both Israelis and Palestinians disappointed.

And yet, the Australian government’s announcement that it would recognize West Jerusalem as Israel’s capital did just that. The Israeli response was tepid, apparently out of disappointment that Australia also reiterated its support for East Jerusalem as the capital of a future Palestinian state; the official Palestinian response was condemnation, arguing that the status of Jerusalem is an issue to be resolved in negotiations.

Australia’s decision is a step in the right direction, as it reaffirms the important pillars of the two-state solution: two sovereign states based on the 1967 borders, with Jerusalem as the capital of both states.

It seems that the nine hour time difference isn’t the only way Australia is ahead of Israel at the moment. The only solution to the problem of the de facto divided city is to make the division official, with West Jerusalem as the Israeli capital and East Jerusalem as the Palestinian capital.