Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas says the holy city of Jerusalem al-Quds can be the gate to either peace or war, and that it is up to the United States to decide which path to choose.
Addressing al-Azhar International Conference on Jerusalem al-Quds in Cairo on Wednesday, Abbas denounced as “sinful” President Donald Trump’s recent decision to recognize the city as Israel’s “capital.”
Washington, he noted, disqualified itself as a broker in the long-stalled negotiations between Israelis and Palestinian aimed at resolving the decades-long conflict.
In December 2017, Trump said Washington was recognizing Jerusalem al-Quds as the “capital” of Israel and planning to relocate the American embassy from Tel Aviv to the holy city.
The announcement drew widespread condemnation and led to mass protests against the US and Israel.
Abbas said the US has defied international law and resolutions to declare the city, which itself has regarded as occupied territory, as the “capital” of Israel.
He also stressed that Palestinians would file a lawsuit with the International Criminal Court and “continue to peacefully pursue our demands until we win back our rights.”
Since 1977, the United Nations General Assembly and Security Council have approved 750 and 86 resolutions, respectively, over Palestine, none of which have been fully enforced, Abbas pointed out.
The United Nations General Assembly rejected Trump’s Jerusalem al-Quds move in a vote on December 21, 2017.
Israel lays claim to the whole Jerusalem al-Quds, but the international community views the ancient city’s eastern sector as occupied land and Palestinians consider it as the capital of their future state.