US Embassy in Jerusalem unveils plaque honoring Jared Kushner

US embassy in Jerusalem names courtyard after Jared Kushner, despite mixed record on peace deals

President’s son-in-law played central role in helping Israel normalise relations with neighbours

Josh Marcus
San Francisco
,Louise Hall
Tuesday 22 December 2020 13:50
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A US embassy in Jerusalem has renamed its courtyard after Jared Kushner to honor his diplomatic efforts.

Mr Kusher, a senior White House advisor - and the president’s son-in-law - attended the unveiling of a plaque on the embassy’s courtyard wall on Monday, The Jerusalem Post reported.

The plaque came in honour of Mr Kushner’s work on behalf of US President Donald Trump in normalising relations between Israel and the wider Middle East.

US ambassador to Israel David Friedman unveiled a plaque in his honor and lauded the adviser’s “near-supernatural perseverance in the pursuit of peace.”

“As they pass through this hallowed ground, they should know they are passing through a place of peace and a place that has brought peace to a troubled region,” Mr Friedman said, according to toThe Post

Mr Kushner has taken on an unusually broad portfolio in the White House ranging from trying to solve the opioid crisis to overseeing the US’s disastrous coronavirus testing regime.

The 39-year-old was a central figure in helping Israel normalise relations with Morocco, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, and Sudan, a major thaw in tensions between Israel and Arab states.

However, the Trump administration and Mr Kushner’s efforts have been criticised for their lack of neutrality in the Israel-Palestine conflict, having apparently taken a far more sympathic view towards Israel.  

In 2017 the administration recognised Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and ordered the US embassy to move there, a highly controversial decision that overturned seven decades of US foreign policy.

Palestinians, who envision east Jerusalem as the capital of their future state, slammed the decision as effectively ending the peace process. 

Mr Kushner’s appointment by the president to lead the process was nearly universally criticised at the time because Mr Kushner lacked any political or diplomatic experience prior to the role.

In early 2020, Mr Kushner unveiled his long-awaited peace plan which proposed giving Israel full control over Jerusalem and denied Palestinians a sovereign state. 

Israel supported the plan, but Palestine rejected it immediately as a “conspiracy deal,” and isn’t on speaking terms with the Trump administration. 

Other regional organisations like the 22-member Arab League and 57-nation Organization of Islamic Cooperation also rejected the plan.

The Biden administration may seek to roll back efforts that defied international norms in exchange for normalisation, such as recognising Morocco’s disputed territorial claims and selling Gulf states American military jets.

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