Arab League warns against US Jerusalem move

 05 Dec 2017 - 16:10

Arab League warns against US Jerusalem move
FILE PHOTO: The Dome of the Rock, the Western Wall and the Mughrabi Gate entrance to the compound known to Muslims as al-Haram al-Sharif, and to Jews as Temple Mount, are seen in Jerusalem's Old City March 7, 2011. REUTERS/Baz Ratner/File Photo


Cairo: The Arab League on Tuesday warned the United States against recognising Jerusalem as Israel's capital, describing such a move as "clear aggression" against Arabs.

The pan-Arab bloc held a delegates-level meeting at its Cairo headquarters, with Arab League chief Ahmed Abul Gheit saying they had convened "given the danger of this matter".

"If it were to happen," he said, it would have "possible negative consequences not only for the situation in Palestine but also for the Arab and Islamic region".

"Successive American presidents since 1980 have realised its importance and the extent it threatens regional stability," Abul Gheit said.

"This decision would end the US role as a trusted mediator between the Palestinians and the (Israeli) occupying forces."

US President Donald Trump on Monday delayed a decision on the highly contentious issue -- a crucial question in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict -- after public warnings from allies and private phone calls between world leaders.

Trump has yet to take a final decision, US officials have said, but he is now expected to stop short of moving the embassy to Jerusalem -- though he may still recognise the city as Israel's capital.

Both Israelis and Palestinians claim Jerusalem as their capital, and previous peace plans have stumbled over debates on whether, and how, to divide sovereignty or oversee holy sites.

In a statement after Tuesday's meeting, the Arab League delegates said in a resolution that the move would constitute "a clear assault on the Arab nation and the rights of Palestinians and all Muslims and Christians".