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On Big Anniversary for Israel, Pence Says US Embassy Move to Jerusalem about 'When and How'

The New York Times, Nov. 30, 1947, Screen Capture

JERUSALEM, Israel – In a keynote address marking the 70th anniversary of the U.N. vote paving the way for the rebirth of the Jewish nation-state, Vice President Mike Pence said the Trump administration stands solidly behind Israel.

"America stands with Israel because her cause is our cause, her values are our values and her fight is our fight. The days of Israel-bashing at the United Nations are over," Pence said, a promise also made by U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley.

"As President Trump says, 'If the world knows nothing else, let them know this: America stands with Israel. Under our administration, America will always stand with Israel,'" he said.

Pence also assured the audience that President Trump continues to actively consider "when and how" to move the American Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

During the campaign, then-candidate Trump promised that if elected, he would follow through on the move postponed for more than two decades by successive U.S. administrations.

In 1995, the U.S. Congress passed legislation to move the embassy, but the bill included a clause allowing the president to postpone the decision biannually.

And despite his campaign promises, President Trump signed a waiver in June postponing the move and disappointing many in Israel.

In just a few more weeks, the president will decide whether to approve the move or stave off the decision for another six months.

CBN CEO Gordon Robertson has co-signed a letter to President Trump urging him to move the embassy now. Last May, he was one of 60 prominent Christian leaders – representing 60 million evangelicals – who urged President Trump not to delay the move, especially in view of the 50th anniversary of the reunification of Jerusalem.  

"This issue is important to Christian leaders, many of whom are in favor of continued Israeli sovereignty over all of Jerusalem, including our revered sites in the eastern part of the city. Only a free and democratic Israel will protect Jerusalem for all peoples of faith," said Susan Michael, director of the U.S. branch of the International Christian Embassy Jerusalem (ICEJ).

Pence said it's "impossible" not to see God's hand on Israel's rebirth.

"Israel didn't need a [U.N.] resolution to call for its existence because its right to exist is self-evident and timeless," he said. "While Israel was built by human hands, it's impossible not to see the hand of heaven here too."

The vice president also talked about the U.S.-led Iranian nuclear deal, saying the administration is working with Congress "to overcome some of the Iran deal's most glaring problems."

"Under President Trump, the U.S. will not allow Iran to develop nuclear weapons," he said. "This is our solemn promise to you, to Israel and to the world."

Meanwhile, Iranian officials continue vowing to destroy both Israel and the U.S. Despite those very real threats, Israeli U.N. Ambassador Danny Danon said Israel will continue to be "a light to the nations."

"Seventy years ago in this very room, in these very seats where you are sitting today, the dream of the Jewish people of 2,000 years came true. Theodor Herzl dreamed of the impossible. In 1947, the Jewish people realized the impossible. And today, in 2017, 70 years later, the modern State of Israel has made the impossible possible," he told U.N. ambassadors, diplomats and leaders of American Jewish organizations.

"From this day onward, for the next 70 years and beyond, Israel will continue to be a beacon of democracy, a powerhouse of innovation and a light to the nations."


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