MK Moshe Gafne was among the many Israeli politicians who responded to the declaration by US President Donald Trump, recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

Speaking with Yated Neeman on Thursday morning, the chairman of Degel Hatorah explained the statement is causing a storm in the world, while in Israel, the sense of satisfaction is cross-sectoral. Gafne continued to explain the difference between the Jerusalem Law and the presidential proclamation.

“When the Jerusalem Law came up with the proposal to annex East Jerusalem as part of Israel, the issue was raised with Maran Rav Shach ZT”L. Maran objected vehemently, explaining it would only serve to provoke the nations while there was no practical need for this, but only declarative,” Gafne explained.

“The law passed and with a look back, we can ask if the law accomplished anything. Did it advance anything? The short history will judge. On the contrary, we are now talking about dividing East Jerusalem, taking the Arab neighborhoods and bringing them back.”

Not long ago, the issue came up in another incarnation, this time in a vote on the question of the majority required to restore East Jerusalem. When the issue was raised, the MKs went to Maran HaGaon HaRav Aharon Yehuda Leib Shteinman’s residence, and discussed the matter with him.

“This is not the case today,” Gafni says of US President Trump’s statement. “The case is now completely different. A. Because this is not a vote on a law, but a declaration. B. The person who announces this is the president of the United States, not us. In addition, there does not seem to be an interest to provoke the nations because it is not about annexation at all.”

“Even today, when the various talk about voting on Jerusalem comes up, the issue in question is the return of East Jerusalem or not, with a majority of eighty MKs required; there is already a law and the new proclamation does not add or diminish. Contrary to why there was once a Jerusalem Law which was a matter of annexing East Jerusalem and the Golan Heights.”