The U.S. today officially opened its new embassy in Jerusalem amid massive protests by Palestinians.
The move comes five months after President Donald Trump made his blockbuster announcement in December that the U.S. embassy would shift from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. The new diplomatic office, in what was an existing U.S. consular building, was opened in a ceremony led by U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman and attended by Israeli and American officials.
"Today's historic event is attributed to the vision, the courage, and the moral clarity of one person to whom we owe an enormous and eternal debt of gratitude -- President Donald J. Trump," Friedman said to a standing ovation at the ceremony.
The U.S. delegation was led by Deputy Secretary of State John Sullivan and included daughter and adviser Ivanka Trump and son-in-law and adviser Jared Kushner. About 800 people were expected at the event, including a congressional delegation with Republican Senators Lindsey Graham, Ted Cruz, Dean Heller, and Mike Lee.
Kushner praised Trump in his speech. "While presidents before him have backed down from their pledge to move the American embassy once they were in office, this president delivered -- because when President Trump makes a promise, he keeps it," Kushner said.
He also alluded to the Palestinian demonstration about 50 miles away. "As we have seen from the protests of the last month and even today, those provoking violence are part of the problem and not part of the solution," Kushner said.
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