Iran votes to declare Jerusalem ‘everlasting capital of Palestine’

Iran votes to declare Jerusalem ‘everlasting capital of Palestine’

Resolution passes unanimously in Tehran parliament, weeks after US president recognizes city as Israel's capital

Iranian MPs attend a parliament session in Tehran, March 1, 2016. (AFP/Atta Kenare)
Iranian MPs attend a parliament session in Tehran, March 1, 2016. (AFP/Atta Kenare)

Iran’s parliament voted Wednesday to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Palestine, according to state-run media.

The vote, which passed 207-0 in the 290-member Majlis, requires Tehran to recognize Jerusalem as “the everlasting capital of Palestine.”

The vote “comes in response to the recent US decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital in hopes of dealing a blow to Muslims,” the Turkish Anadolu news agency quoted speaker Ali Larijani as saying.

In a move that delighted much of Israel’s leadership but ignited protests across the Muslim world, US President Donald Trump announced on December 6 that the US recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and planned to move its embassy there from Tel Aviv. Trump stressed that he was not specifying the boundaries of Israeli sovereignty in the city, and called for no change in the status quo at the city’s holy sites.

Trump’s declaration has been condemned by the Islamic Republic, which is committed to Israel’s destruction.

Earlier this week, Hamas’s leader in the Gaza Strip, Yahya Sinwar, said that a senior Iranian military commander pledged all of the Islamic Republic’s military resources to help the Gaza-based terror group fight Israel over Jerusalem.

“All our of capabilities and potential are at your disposal in the battle for the defense of Jerusalem,” Sinwar said that Qassem Soleimani, the commander of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps’ elite Quds Force, told him over the phone.

The statements by Sinwar regarding Soleimani were broadcast Monday by the pro-Iranian Lebanese news outlet al-Mayadeen, and seemed to be from a speech he gave on Thursday in Gaza to young men and social media activists.

According to Sinwar, Soleimani asserted that “Iran, the Revolutionary Guards and Quds Force stand with all they have with our people in order to defend Jerusalem so that Jerusalem will endure as the capital of the state of Palestine.”

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