Eight of 15 member states call for meeting on Jerusalem; Turkey claims international laws violated; Arab world condemns USA decision, claims peace process ruined; Netanyahu reports countries already in talks with Israel for moving their embassies; The Philippines to move embassy to Jerusalem, Czech recognizes west Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, Dec. 7, 2017.
The United Nations Security Council will meet on Friday to address the United States recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, as countries globally condemn the United States’ recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.
Eight of the fifteen-member council, including Bolivia, the UK, Egypt, France, Italy, Senegal, Sweden and Uruguay called for the meeting following Trump’s address Wednesday, with Turkey’s representative to the United Nations accusing Israel of international law violations.
United Nations Secretary General General Antonio Guterres condemned the recognition, stating to the press following Trump’s address Wednesday “I have consistently spoken out against any unilateral measures that would jeopardize the prospect of peace for Israelis and Palestinians. In this moment of great anxiety, I want to make it clear: There is no alternative to the two-state solution. There is no Plan B. I will do everything in my power to support the Israeli and Palestinian leaders to return to meaningful negotiations.”
The Arab world immediately condemned Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem, Hamas calling for an intifada and the Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas reporting, “the U.S. can no longer function as a diplomatic sponsor and peace mediator.”
Abbas stated on Wednesday night “This is a historical moment and we must act… These condemned and unacceptable measures are a deliberate undermining of all efforts exerted to achieve peace and represent a declaration of the United States’ withdrawal from undertaking the role it has played over the past decades in sponsoring the peace process.”
Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozdag claimed that “Declaring Jerusalem a capital is disregarding history and the truths in the region, it is a big injustice/cruelty, shortsightedness, foolishness/madness, it is plunging the region and the world into a fire with no end in sight. I call on everyone to act logically, respect the agreements they signed and behave reasonably, avoid risking world peace for domestic politics or other reasons.”
Hamas head Ismail Haniyeh claimed “the American decision is a declaration of war, aggression on our people and a war on our sanctuaries,” calling for an intifada on Israel, stating “We should call for and we should work on launching an intifada in the face of the Zionist enemy. He called for Friday (tomorrow) to be “a day of rage and the beginning of a major effort to rise up, which I will name the intifada of Jerusalem and the West Bank’s freedom”.
While many have condemned the recognition, some have not. The Philippines announced it would move its embassy to Jerusalem ahead of Trump’s address Wednesday, President Rodrigo Duterte announcing the move himself, and shortly after Trump’s speech, the Czech Republic confirmed it recognizes west Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.
Prime Minister Netanyahu again addressed Wednesday’s historic event, reporting Thursday Israel is “already holding talks with other countries, who will make a similar recognition”.
Photo: UN Security Council, CC, 2017