KARACHI: Pakistan strongly condemns US President Donald Trump’s move to recognize Jerusalem as the Israeli capital, voicing its concern “over the implications of this decision for international peace and security, especially in the Middle East”, the Foreign Office said in a statement issued Wednesday night.
Trump recognised late Wednesday the disputed city as Israel’s capital — a historic decision that overturns decades of American policy and risks triggering a fresh wave of violence in the Middle East.
“I have determined that it is time to officially recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel,” Trump said from the White House.
“It’s the right thing to do.”
The Pakistani Foreign Office went on to say the nation “joins the international community in expressing its strong opposition and condemnation” at the risky move.
The fact that pleas from around the world were ignored — “more out of choice than necessity” — by the American head of state “is deeply regrettable”.
Calling it “a serious violation of international law” and United Nations Security Council’s (UNSC) resolutions, Pakistan said that Trump’s decision was “a serious setback to the rule of law and international norms” and “a severe blow to the Middle East peace process”.
“Pakistan calls upon the [UNSC] to take cognizance of this situation and take steps in accordance with the UN Charter.
“Pakistan urges the United States to revisit its decision as soon as possible in order to avoid the potentially grave repercussions in the region and beyond.
The Pakistani government welcomed Turkey’s announcement to convene an extraordinary summit of Muslim countries next week to talk about the matter.
Targets ‘entire Muslim world’
Khawaja Asif — the Minister of Foreign Affairs — said the US had targeted not only Palestinians but the entire Muslim world.
Speaking on media, the minister said “the sanctity of Al-Quds for Muslims is not hidden from anyone” and that “not only are the Palestinians a target of this wound but the entire Muslim world.”
“This is a blatant evidence of opposition to Muslims.
“A proxy is being propped up in the Middle East, which is extremely condemnable,” the foreign minister said.”
Trump also kicked off the process of moving the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, saying his decision marked the start of a “new approach” to solving the thorny conflict between Israel and the Palestinians.
Asif said Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has called an emergency meeting of members of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) on December 13.
“We fully back it and the Muslim world will present its detailed stance from the platform, so that we may fight for the aspirations of our Palestinian brothers,” Asif added.
Earlier, in a tweet prior to the announcement by Trump, Asif had said, “By moving the US embassy will practically alter the status of Jerusalem, an affront to Palestinians and the Muslim world.”
He had said the recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital will be practically burying the two states solution.
“It will add another wound to already bleeding body of Muslim Ummah.”