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October 29, 2020 1:24 pm

US to Allow Jerusalem-Born Americans to List Israel as Birthplace, Pompeo Says

avatar by Reuters and Algemeiner Staff

People wear protective masks as they walk around central Jerusalem, amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, July 7, 2020. Photo: Reuters / Ammar Awad.

American citizens born in Jerusalem will now be able to list Israel as their birthplace on their passports, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced on Thursday, in a nod to Washington’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel‘s capital.

Five years ago, when Barack Obama was in the White House, the US Supreme Court struck down a law that would have let Jerusalem-born Americans list Israel on their passports as their country of birth, saying it unlawfully encroached on presidential powers to set foreign policy.

The future status of Jerusalem, a city holy to Muslims, Jews and Christians, is at the heart of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. In 2017, US President Donald Trump reversed decades of American policy and recognized Jerusalem as Israel‘s capital.

In his statement on Thursday, Pompeo said the decision to allow Jerusalem-born US citizens to choose to enter Israel or Jerusalem as their birthplace was “consistent” with Trump’s 2017 proclamation.

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