A university don at the Lagos State University (LASU), Dr Olawale Lawal, has described as “insensitive” the recent movement of US Embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
Lawal, a diplomacy and foreign policy expert said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Monday in Lagos.
He said that Jerusalem was key to resolving the prolonged conflicts in the Middle East and should have been maintained as neutral ground until its status was favourably decided.
“Some geographical spaces in the world have political and religious implications; Jerusalem is a contested space on the bases of both politics and religion.
” Solution to the Middle East conflicts should begin with resolving the status of Jerusalem, and if the status is not resolved, we are far from resolving the conflicts.
“America’s movement of its foreign mission to Jerusalem does not do anybody any good, and it will further worsen the conflicts, ” he said.
Lawal, however, said that nations have rights to determine the location of their foreign missions, adding that, certain considerations were crucial in making such decisions.
“Nations actually reserve the right to determine the location of their foreign missions within any particular country, but certain considerations should go into such decisions.
“By relocating its embassy, America effectively recognises Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, against a United Nations’ decision that the place be left as neutral,” he said.
He suggested a ” two-state solution between the Arabs and Jews as a viable means of resolving the crisis.
“If Palestinians and Israels align as a nation in a democratic setting, the Jews will feel shortchanged because the Palestinians, with a larger population, will almost always win in popular elections.
“The solution would be a two-state structure between the Arabs and the Jews, with the amicable determination of the status of Jerusalem as an integral part of the agreement,” he said.
NAN reports that the American government relocated its Israeli embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem on May 14, amidst jubilations by Israelis and protestations by Palestinians.