Turkish President Erdoğan has said the decision to move the US embassy to Jerusalem is the “red line” for Muslims.
Trump’s Move On Jerusalem Sparks Palestinian ‘Rage’
US President Donald Trump has decided to officially recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, a move which will spark anger in Palestine, media reports say.
The White House officials have confirmed the US President’s decision to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, ahead of his speech on the subject early tomorrow, Thursday, Australian time.
According to a report by Daily Telegraph, senior white house officials said the move was designed to acknowledge the “reality” that Jerusalem was the capital of Israel and fulfil a “major campaign promise”.
King Abdullah of Jordan said the decision “would constitute a flagrant provocation to all Muslims, all over the world”.
Talk of the change received a swift rebuke from Palestinian factions, who called for protests to start on Wednesday and continue through to Friday, according to The Jerusalem Post.
There are fears the demonstrations will turn violent.
“We call on all our people in Israel and around the world to gather in city centers and Israeli embassies and consulates, with the aim of bringing about general popular anger,” Palestinian national and Islamic forces said in a statement.
The White House said the city’s place as the capital was both a “historical reality” that stretched back to the establishment of Israel in 1948, and a “current reality” given that it was home to the parliament, supreme court and prime minister.
“The President is affirming a reality, a seven-decade-old fact,” a senior White House official said.
On Thursday, Trump will direct the US State Department to begin moving the embassy, a process that takes at least three years. A site has yet to be chosen.
The White House acknowledged it was a “sensitive issue”, but said the change did not affect ongoing debates between Israel and Palestine over borders and sovereignty.
“Delaying the recognition of Jerusalem as the capital has done nothing to achieve peace for more than two decades,” a senior White House official said.
“For a long time, the US position held that the ambiguity would advance the prospect of peace. Twenty-two years on and it seems clear that the focus on the location of the US embassy has … not facilitated peace.”
According to a report by Associated Press, America’s consulate in Jerusalem ordered US personnel and their families to avoid visiting Jerusalem’s Old City or the West Bank, and urged American citizens in general to avoid places with increased police or military presence.
Media reported on Wednesday that the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has said the decision to move the US embassy to Jerusalem is the “red line” for Muslims around the world.