Netanyahu lauds, Palestinians deplore Australia for mulling embassy move

Australia's Treasurer Scott Morrison attends a press conference in Parliament House in Canberra

Australia's Treasurer Scott Morrison attends a press conference in Parliament House in Canberra

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu posted on Twitter on Monday that during a phone meeting with his Australian counterpart, Morrison hinted at potentially moving Australia's embassy to Jerusalem - which Israel and Palestine both believe is their own capital.

If Australia does proceed, it will be following the U.S. which earlier this year moved its embassy, effectively recognising the holy city of Jerusalem as the "true" capital of Israel.

"When sensible suggestions are put forward that are consistent with your policy positioning and in this case pursuing a two-state solution, Australia should be open-minded to this and I am open-minded to this and our government is open-minded to this", Morrison told reporters.

The Trump administration turned its back on decades of United States policy by recognising Jerusalem as Israel's capital and moving the USA embassy from Tel Aviv in May. "I'm very thankful to him for this", Netanyahu tweeted.

Former Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and Foreign Minister Julie Bishop had rejected the proposal when it was urged on them by the Government's conservative wing earlier this year, in the wake of US President Donald Trump's decision to make the same move.

You see we want to see a two state solution achieved and sometimes to achieve that you have got to think about doing things differently.

"He hasn't offered a single reason why now is the appropriate time for Australia to be moving its embassy to west Jerusalem", he said.

Cops lure runaway pig back home with Doritos
The footage shows one of the officers walking in front of the hefty swine, flashing a Doritos chip, as the pig follows her. The caller reportedly described the road hog as a real porker, comparing it to "the size of a mini horse".

Mr Morrison confirmed he had also ordered a review into Australia's involvement in the nuclear deal with Iran, again bringing Australian foreign policy closer to that of President Trump.

The prime minister has also credited the Liberal Party's Wentworth by-election candidate Dave Sharma, a former Australian ambassador to Israel, with raising the issue.

The opposition centre-left Labor Party denounced Morrison's announcement.

'Foreign policy, and Australia's national interest are far too important to be played with in this fashion, ' Senator Wong said.

"I have made this decision without any reference to the United States", he said.

Despite the controversial move, Morrison appeared to voice his commitment to a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. "It has not come up in any discussion that I have had with the president or officials".

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