US President Donald Trump is expected to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel on Wednesday, and announce his plans to move the US embassy to the city. He has called Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and other Arab leaders to inform them of his intentions.
He was warned by many in the Middle East and elsewhere of the "disastrous consequences" the move would have on regional stability and any prospect of a long-lasting peace agreement between the Israelis and Palestinians. No country currently has its embassy in Jerusalem, and the international community, including the US, does not recognize Israel's jurisdiction over and ownership of the city.
Israel claims the city as its capital, following the occupation of East Jerusalem in the 1967 war with Syria, Egypt and Jordan, and considers Jerusalem to be a "united" city. Palestinians have long seen East Jerusalem as the capital of their future state. Here is how leaders from around the world reacted:
Jordan's King Abdullah II told Trump that such a decision would have "dangerous repercussions on the stability and security of the region", according to a statement released by the palace.
The king also warned the US president of the risks of any decision that ran counter to a final settlement of the Arab-Israeli conflict based on the creation of an independent Palestinian state with its capital in East Jerusalem. In a statement, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi also cautioned Trump against "taking measures that would undermine the chances of peace in the Middle East".
Following a separate phone conversation with Trump, Saudi King Salman also told the US president "that any American announcement regarding the situation of Jerusalem prior to reaching a permanent settlement will harm peace talks and increase tensions in the area".
Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said the US move was "because of their incompetence and failure". The Syrian foreign ministry said: "[The move] is the culmination of the crime of usurping Palestine and displacing the Palestinian people."
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