Romney Scorns Democrats for Dropping 'Jerusalem' Reference from Platformإقرأ هذا الخبر بالعربية
U.S. Democrats dropped a reference to Jerusalem being the capital of Israel from their election platform, prompting scorn from rival Mitt Romney Thursday.
Since 1992 Democrats have stated unequivocally that "Jerusalem is the capital of Israel," as they did in 2008.
That language was not in their 2012 election document, which was presented at the party convention that begins in Charlotte, North Carolina later on Tuesday.
Party officials did not respond to requests for comment on the reasons for the omission.
The status of Jerusalem is one of the most contentious issues of the long-running Israeli-Palestinian conflict and a thorny issue in U.S. politics.
Israel, which occupied the largely Arab eastern sector during the 1967 Six-Day War and later annexed it, claims both halves of the city to be its "eternal and undivided capital."
But the Palestinians want the eastern sector as the capital of their promised state and fiercely oppose any Israeli attempt to extend sovereignty there.
Thanks in large part to the influence of Jewish voters in key battleground states like Florida, relations with Israel are a hot button issue in U.S. elections.
With 63 days until the polls, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney assailed the Democrats' removal from their platform of an "acknowledgment of a simple reality," and for hurting ties with a "cherished ally."
"It is unfortunate that the entire Democratic Party has embraced President Obama's shameful refusal to acknowledge that Jerusalem is Israel's capital," he said in a statement.
"As president, I will restore our relationship with Israel and stand shoulder to shoulder with our close ally."
After a visit to Israel in July, Romney lambasted Obama over the same issue.
Democrat and Republican White Houses have long stated that Jerusalem's final status should be decided by negotiations between the two parties.
Most of the international community, including the United States, does not formally recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital.