US to restore relations with Palestinians but will continue “steadfast support” to Israel

The Biden administration has also said it will support the two-state solution. However, it has already made clear it will not reverse its predecessor’s shifting of the US embassy to Jerusalem in violation of international law

January 27, 2021 by Peoples Dispatch
The Biden administration has also said it will support the two-state solution. However, it has already made clear it will not reverse its predecessor’s shifting of the US embassy to Jerusalem in violation of international law

The new government of Joe Biden said on Tuesday, January 26 that it will reopen Palestinian diplomatic missions in the United States and resume critical financial and humanitarian assistance to Palestine. The acting US ambassador to the United Nations, Richard Mills, told the UN Security Council that the Biden administration intends to renew “US relations with the Palestinian leadership and Palestinian people, relations which have atrophied over the last four years.”

Observers have pointed out however that there will remain an essential continuity in a lot of positions of the US regarding Palestine. Earlier, the new US secretary of State Antony Blinken had said that there is no proposal to move back the US embassy from Jerusalem to Tel Aviv. The decision to shift the embassy in Jerusalem in 2017 had led to massive protests in Palestine. Similarly, on Tuesday, Mills hailed the normalization of ties between Israel and a number of Arab countries as part of the Abraham Accords, a process which has been widely condemned by Palestinians and social and political movements in the region.

In his remarks, ambassador Mills also stated that “the US will maintain its steadfast support for Israel” adding that “the US will continue its long-standing policy of opposing one-sided resolutions and other actions in international bodies that unfairly single out Israel,”

The new administration will also restore US backing for the ‘two-state solution’, in stark contrast to the Trump administration’s universally rejected ‘Deal of the Century’ which was condemned by human rights groups as being one-sided, heavily biased towards Israel, and legitimizing and officially recognizing the apartheid and occupation of the Palestinian people by Israel. 

The Biden administration’s policies on a number of other moves by its predecessor also remain unknown. These include the recognizing of Israeli sovereignty over the occupied Syrian Golan Heights, recognizing Israeli claims over Jerusalem as its “eternal and undivided capital” and the support for the illegal Jewish settlements on occupied Palestinian land. The new administration is also yet to comment on attacks on the Palestinian BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions) movement, including the Trump administration’s labelling of it as ‘anti-semitic.’