Australian PM to make Israel embassy decision by Christmas

Source: Xinhua| 2018-11-15 16:41:09|Editor: huaxia
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CANBERRA, Nov. 15 (Xinhua) -- The Opposition Australian Labor Party (ALP) has called on Prime Minister (PM) Scott Morrison to abandon plans to move the Israel embassy to Jerusalem.

Penny Wong, the ALP's foreign affairs spokesperson, on Thursday said that moving the embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem should be dismissed on the grounds that it would harm Australia's relationship with Indonesia.

Morrison on Thursday said that he would make a final decision on the embassy by Christmas (Dec. 25) after meeting with Indonesian President Joko Widodo.

The PM in October said he was "open" to the idea, which would make Australia the second country in the world to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel after U.S. President Donald Trump did so.

The Indonesian government has previously voiced its disapproval of the proposal on the grounds that the country's conservative Islamic majority does not recognize Jerusalem as an Israeli city.

Morrison made the announcement only days after he and Widodo agreed on a free trade agreement between the two countries that had been years in the making.

"The reality is the Indonesian trade minister has made very clear the delay in finalizing this agreement, or signing, is the government's position on Palestine," Wong told Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) radio on Thursday. Enditem