JERUSALEM (AP) — Jerusalem municipal authorities said Wednesday they have given preliminary approval to a location for a new U.S. Embassy in the city.
In a statement on Twitter, Deputy Mayor Fleur Hassan-Nahoum said the city’s building and planning committee approved the plans. She told The Associated Press that another committee must still grant approval, which she expects to happen in the coming weeks.
The location is on the city’s Hebron Road, a central thoroughfare, and not far from the current temporary embassy. The site is near an invisible line that divides west and east Jerusalem, the part of the city captured in the 1967 Mideast war and claimed by the Palestinians for a future capital. It was not immediately clear if it crosses the boundary.
In a controversial move, the outgoing Trump administration recognized contested Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and moved its embassy from Tel Aviv to the holy city in 2018. It was one of a string of diplomatic gifts delivered by President Donald Trump to Israel.
President-elect Joe Biden is expected to take a more balanced approach toward Israel and the Palestinians, but he has said he does not plan on moving the embassy back to Tel Aviv.