In response to President Donald Trump's decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said the city will never cease being his people's capital:
Jerusalem is a “Palestinian, Arab, Christian, Muslim city and it is the capital city of Palestine forever”: Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas saying US President Trump's move on Jerusalem changes nothing pic.twitter.com/6l6SS74CuR
— TRT World Now (@TRTWorldNow) December 6, 2017
“Mr. Trump's decision will never change the status quo of Jerusalem and will not give any legitimacy to Israel,” Abbas said, according to Axios.
Trump told Abbas on Tuesday that he would move the United States's embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, a territory that the international community recognizes as unsettled.
Abbas's spokesperson reported that in response, Abbas “warned of the dangerous consequences such a decision would have to the peace process and to the peace, security, and stability of the region and of the world.” Saudi Arabia's King Salman similarly warned that Trump's Israel decisions would provoke Muslims around the world.
In Abbas's address on Wednesday, he charged Trump with effectively issuing a “declaration of withdrawal” from the peace process between Israel and Palestine. Trump's decision, Abbas said, ruined prospects for a two-state solution, something that administration officials indicated Trump supported.
But on Tuesday, administration officials defended Trump's decision as a way to affirm the “reality” of Israel's situation.
Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel's prime minister, also praised Trump's decision as an avenue toward peace in the region.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu: @POTUS Trump, thank you for today's historic decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital. The Jewish people and the Jewish state will be forever grateful. pic.twitter.com/Z24lSRezYm
— PM of Israel (@IsraeliPM) December 6, 2017
“The president's decision is an important step towards peace. For there is no peace that doesn't include Jerusalem as the capital of the state of Israel,” he said.