Within a few hours, the verified Twitter account of the US ambassador to Israel, @USAmbIsrael, changed its name twice after Joe Biden’s inauguration as US president on Wednesday.
The name changed from the “US Ambassador to Israel” to the “US Ambassador to Israel, the West Bank, and Gaza,” however, those responsible for handling the account reverted to the original name a few hours later.
No official explanation was provided for the incident.
David Friedman, who served as the US ambassador to Israel from 2017 to 2021, shared his last tweet from this account on Wednesday without commenting on the matter.
“Signing off now, moving to @DavidM_Friedman. Thank you, President Trump, for the honor of a lifetime. Thank you @Mike_Pence, @MikePompeo, @SteveMnuchin1, Jared Kushner, @AviBerkow45, @Robertcobrien, and @LightstoneA. And eternal thanks to my beloved Tammy,” he tweeted.
The name change garnered the attention of a number of experts on US politics and international reporters, who proceeded to tweet about it.
The arrival of President Joe Biden to the White House revitalises Palestinians’ hopes for the establishment of a Palestinian state. Biden served as a vice president for former US president Barack Obama, the last US head of state to impose pressures on Israel to join peace talks.
Obama pressed Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to freeze the settlement-building process, which was achieved for almost a year in 2009. However, objecting to a Fatah-Hamas reconciliation deal, Netanyahu unilaterally withdrew from peace talks with the Palestinian parties in 2014. Since then, the peace process has been dead.
Under Donald Trump's administration, Washington adopted a large number of pro-Israeli measures, including the introduction of the controversial peace plan that involved recognising Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. Trump also cut US funding, worth $300 million, to the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian Refugees.