Turkey warns against moving embassies to Jerusalem


Turkish Deputy Parliament Speaker Ahmet Aydin warned on Tuesday the countries that intend to transfer their embassies from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, renewing Turkey’s support for the establishment of a Palestinian state on the 1967 borders with East Jerusalem as its capital.

Addressing the 23rd meeting of the Palestinian National Council, Aydin urged states not to take such steps “that will remind your future generations of shame and will be a black mark on your history”.

The Turkish official said the U.S. decision to transfer its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem on the eve of the "Nakba" Day, cannot be justified.

May 15 this year will mark the 70th anniversary of Israel's establishment — an event Palestinians refer to as the "Nakba" or "Catastrophe".

Last December, the U.S. president recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, sparking condemnation and protest across much of the Middle East.

Donald Trump later said Washington’s Israel embassy would be relocated from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem in May to coincide with the 70th anniversary of Israel's establishment.

Certain states including Guatemala, Honduras, Paraguay, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and Honduras have indicated their intention to transfer their embassies in Israel to Jerusalem.

Aydin said "Turkey's position is clear for the solution of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, and the establishment of an independent Palestinian state on the borders occupied in 1967, and East Jerusalem as its capital."

Aydin called on the Muslims worldwide to visit the city of Jerusalem and Palestine, while stressing the need to end divisions between the two Palestinian movements, Fatah and Hamas.

The 23rd meeting of the Palestinian National Council convened on Monday evening in the city of Ramallah in the center of the occupied West Bank, in the first regular meeting of the council in 22 years.

For the first time, Arab Israelis were in attendances.

The four-day meeting is being held without the participation of the two resistance movements Hamas and Islamic Jihad, which both declined to participate saying they did not want to attend an event held under Israeli occupation.

Despite the lack of agreement over the meeting, a statement by the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) stressed the importance of preserving the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) as the “sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people”, preempting efforts “to dismantle it or create alternatives to it”.

Early last month, the PLO's executive committee announced plans to convene the Palestinian National Council after a 22-year hiatus.

A legislative body that theoretically represents Palestinians at home and abroad, the National Council last met in 1996.

The National Council was originally founded in 1948.


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