US to Allow Jerusalem-Born Americans to List Israel as Birthplace, Pompeo Says
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.
Consistent with President @realDonaldTrump‘s policy, I am happy to announce U.S. citizens born in Jerusalem can now elect to list their place of birth as either “Jerusalem” or “Israel” on their passports. We remain committed to lasting peace between Israelis and Palestinians.
— Secretary Pompeo (@SecPompeo) October 29, 2020