Palestinian FM: U.S. becomes part of conflict not broker


“We are heading to Jerusalem as heroes and freemen,” said Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in a video recording in the beginning of a press conference on Saturday.

The press conference took place at the Palestinian Embassy in Cairo; Minister of Foreign Affairs Riyad al-Malki stressed that the American stance opposes the U.S.’ obligations, international laws and the international stance towards the Palestinian cause.

President Abbas stressed Palestinian resentment, according to al-Malki. He also reiterated Palestinians’ stance which is a “complete rejection of the American recognition of Jerusalem as the capital city of Israel.”

“Trump’s announcement over Jerusalem is politically and historically illegal and illegitimate,” al-Malki added during the press conference.

Jerusalem is “part and parcel of the occupied land of Palestine,” thus Trump’s announcement withdrew the U.S. from playing any role in meditation including group talks regarding the peace process and the end of the Middle East conflict talks, al-Malki added.

“The U.S. becomes a part of the conflict not broker,” he stressed.

The Arab League convened on Saturday to discuss the consequences of the American decision and to take a unified Arab stance. “We attended the urgent meeting of the Arab League Saturday upon a request from Jordan,” al-Malki noted.

He stressed that Palestine has submitted an official complaint to the United Nations against the American decision over Jerusalem, saying the Arab delegations at the UN will draft a law in accordance to the Article XI-27 to deprive the U.S. of its veto in any session related to the peace process talks.

“Eastern Jerusalem is the eternal capital of Palestine,” al-Malki said.

Palestinian President Abbas will not meet with U.S. Vice President Mike Pence on December 19 who will be touring the Middle East. Egypt’s Al-Azhar Grand Imam Ahmed El-Tayeb and Pope Tawadros II of Alexandria refused to meet with Pence, who will visit Egypt on December 20, according to official statements from Al-Azhar and the Orthodox Church on Saturday.

Al-Malki added that all options are on the table to protect Jerusalem from Israel, adding that “we will use all legal and political means to protect our Jerusalem.”

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