The National Council of Young Israel (NCYI) praised legislation introduced in the U.S. Senate which would require the United States to relocate the American Embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. The Jerusalem Embassy Relocation Act of 2009 calls on the U.S. State Department to eliminate the waiver that has been used by United States Presidents for the past 14 years to prevent the American Embassy from being relocated to Jerusalem. Although the 1995 Jerusalem Embassy Law requires that the embassy be moved to Jerusalem, there was a presidential waiver included in the legislation, which enables U.S. Presidents to avoid having to move the embassy to the Israeli capital based on national security reasons.
The introduction of the legislation was announced by the bill’s sponsor, Senator Sam Brownback of Kansas, at the recent Jerusalem Conference that took place in Washington, D.C. The Jerusalem Conference provided a unique forum for the discussion of Israel’s national priorities, including the importance of a united Jerusalem, as well as the challenges and external threats faced by Israel and the West. Members of the NCYI Executive Board and professional staff were present when the announcement was made.
“It is preposterous for the U.S. Embassy to remain in Tel Aviv rather than Jerusalem, when every other American Embassy throughout the world is found in those nations’ capital cities,” said NCYI President Shlomo Z. Mostofsky. “This legislation will put an end to a practice that has been used by U.S. Presidents since 1995, which prevents the American Embassy from being moved to its rightful place in the Israeli capital, and sends a troubling message to the world about the United States’ stance on the future of Jerusalem. We wholeheartedly support this legislation and urge the Senate to pass the Jerusalem Embassy Relocation Act of 2009.”
Senator John Kyl of Arizona, one of the original sponsors of the 1995 Jerusalem Embassy Law and a co-sponsor of the new Jerusalem Embassy Relocation Act of 2009, discussed the importance of moving the American Embassy to Jerusalem with NCYI Executive Vice President Rabbi Pesach Lerner during the recent Jerusalem Conference in Washington, D.C.
“Senator Kyl expressed his sincere belief in the need to move the American Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem and reiterated his commitment to ensuring that his colleagues in the Senate understand the significance of this legislation,” said NCYI Executive Vice President Rabbi Pesach Lerner. “Passage of this legislation will send a clear and powerful message to the world that the United States acknowledges that Jerusalem is the duly recognized capital of the State of Israel.”
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