Diplomatic Briefing

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Archive for May 1, 2018

Newsline: New embassy quarter to be built in Jerusalem, could be called ‘Trump Town’

Construction Minister Yoav Gallant has instructed the top officials in his ministry to begin the process of planning and approving a new quarter for embassies from countries around the world that will be built in Jerusalem. Even before the progress made this week toward moving the embassies of the Czech Republic, Romania, and Honduras, Gallant had already sent a letter to Construction Ministry director-general Hegai Roznik and chief architect Vered Solomon-Maman last Friday, asking them to form a task force that will immediately begin working on finding an appropriate site for many embassies in the capital. “There is an apparent pattern of embassies moving to Jerusalem, and we have to start getting ready now,” Gallant said. “We might have to build dozens of embassies, and we would need new land ready for that purpose. I asked my ministry to vigorously take action as fast as possible.” Gallant suggested a couple possible names for the area where the embassies would be located. He initially called it “Embassy Town,” but then said he may decide to instead call it “Trump Town,” after US President Donald Trump, who initiated next month’s move of the US Embassy to Jerusalem.



Newsline: China, Dominican Republic to establish diplomatic ties

China and the Dominican Republic have signed an agreement to establish diplomatic ties, the Chinese government’s top diplomat, Wang Yi, said at a news briefing on Tuesday. The Dominican Republic has been a diplomatic ally of Taiwan. China offered the Dominican Republic a $3.1 billion package of investments and loans to get them to sever ties with Taiwan, a Taiwan official said on Tuesday, after the Caribbean nation switched allegiance to China in a diplomatic blow to the self-ruled island. Taiwan, claimed by China as its own, has formal relations now with only 19 countries, many of them poor nations in Central America and the Pacific like Belize and Nauru. China says Taiwan is simply a wayward province with no right to state-to-state ties. China and Taiwan have tried to poach each other’s allies over the years, often dangling generous aid packages in front of developing nations, though Taipei struggles to compete with an increasingly powerful China. Panama ended its long-standing relationship with Taiwan last year in a major diplomatic victory for China. The Vatican is possibly next on the list, as the Holy See and China edge closer to an accord on the appointment of bishops in China.


Newsline: US authorities remove Russian flag from consulate building in Seattle

US authorities have removed Russian flag from the previously seized residence of Russian Consul General in Seattle, Russian Embassy reported. US authorities have removed the Russian flag from the seized residence of the Consul General in Seattle, which is unacceptable with regard to the Russian official symbol and represents yet another violation of international norms by Washington, the Russian Embassy in the United States said in a statement. “Today, under cover of night, the US authorities removed the Russian flag from the residence of Consul General in Seattle,” the embassy announced. “These unlawful actions can’t be treated other than being unacceptable towards Russian official symbol and yet another example of Washington’s gross violation of norms of international law.”