Romania discusses embassy transfer to Jerusalem
The social democratic government in Bucharest is contemplating moving the Romanian embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. However Romanian President Klaus Iohannis quickly qualified a statement to this effect by PSD leader Liviu Dragnea. The country's media examine the backdrop to the dispute.
Arguments over electoral tactics
The whole debate is about nothing but idle party politics, journalist Ion Cristoiu is convinced in Evenimentul Zilei:
“Dragnea has shown his PSD voters that he can deal a solid blow to Klaus Iohannis when he wants to. ... Basically this is domestic decision, not a foreign policy one; it is a dispute driven by electoral tactics rather than serious policy issues. I have no doubt that Romania will not shift its embassy to Jerusalem before the big powers have reached a decision on the issue. So it's useless to discuss the consequences of the move as long as what we're really dealing with is simple electoral tactics.”
Bucharest must define its own stance
Romania is missing an opportunity for diplomatic emancipation here, the Romanian service of German public broadcaster Deutsche Welle comments:
“The president is overlooking the fact that Romania's delegate abstained in the vote on the UN resolution [on the US moving its embassy to Jerusalem, held in December 2017] and therefore it is not a matter of course that the [Romanian] position should remain conform to that of the EU. The different positions have their roots in domestic policy, but as regards the real issue President Iohannis is missing an opportunity here to support this emancipatory initiative in Romanian diplomacy and raise it up from the zone of ambiguity and irrelevance.”