search

Arab foreign ministers warn against changes in Jerusalem

Arab League adopts resolution against attempts to ‘jeopardize the historic and legal status’ of city, in apparent reference to US embassy move

File: Ministers and representatives of the Arab League meet at the Dead Sea in Jordan, March 27, 2017. (AP Photo/Muntasser Akour)
File: Ministers and representatives of the Arab League meet at the Dead Sea in Jordan, March 27, 2017. (AP Photo/Muntasser Akour)

Arab foreign ministers unanimously endorsed more than a dozen policy resolutions at the Arab Summit, including one rejecting unilateral steps that “jeopardize the historic and legal status” of Jerusalem, Jordan’s foreign minister said Monday.

The resolution was in apparent reference to US President Donald Trump’s promise to move the US Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, the city at the core of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

The Palestinians seek a capital in East Jerusalem as part of a future state in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, all of which were captured by Israel in the 1967 Six Day War.

Israel says that Jerusalem is the undivided, eternal capital of the Jewish people.

The Jordanian minister, Ayman Safadi, said Monday that the resolution is one of “about 17” to be adopted later this week at a gathering of Arab heads of states in Jordan.

He said the ministers also reaffirmed the need to establish a state of Palestine alongside Israel.

Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi attends an Arab Summit meeting at the Dead Sea, Jordan, on March 27, 2017. (AP Photo/Sam McNeil)
Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi attends an Arab Summit meeting at the Dead Sea, Jordan, on March 27, 2017. (AP Photo/Sam McNeil)

Earlier this month, Arab League foreign ministers adopted a resolution against any attempt to move diplomatic missions to Jerusalem.

The League “considers setting up any diplomatic mission in Jerusalem or moving it to the city an explicit attack on the rights of the Palestinian people and all Muslims and Christians,” the resolution read.

The resolution, which did not explicitly mention Trump or the United States, which has its Israel embassy in Tel Aviv, was adopted unanimously by the 22-member bloc.

Moving diplomatic missions to Jerusalem would be “a serious violation of international law and the Fourth Geneva Convention, and relevant Security Council resolutions,” it said.

The US embassy in Tel Aviv, Israel, June 14, 2016. (Flash 90)
The US embassy in Tel Aviv, June 14, 2016. (Flash 90)

Departing from Washington’s long-standing position, Trump promised while campaigning to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and relocate the American mission there, drawing a fierce rebuke from Palestinian Authority officials and concern from the European Union.

Despite the enthusiasm expressed by Israeli officials over a possible embassy move, Trump has seemed to walk back his pledge to relocate the embassy since his inauguration, saying in an interview in late January that “I don’t want to talk about it yet. It’s too early.”

However, US Vice President Mike Pence said on Sunday at the annual gathering of the pro-Israel lobby AIPAC that “the president of the United States is giving serious consideration to moving the United States Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem,” although he did not provide any further specifics.

Times of Israel staff contributed to this report.

read more:
comments