The 57-nation Organization of Islamic Cooperation said it considers the U.S. move an “illegal decision” and “an attack on the historical, legal, natural and national rights of the Palestinian people.” The organization said the move Monday also represents “an affront to international peace and security.”
The OIC said the U.S. administration has “expressed utter disdain and disrespect to Palestinian legitimate rights and international law” and shown disregard toward the sentiments of Muslims, who value Jerusalem as home to one of Islam’s holiest sites, the al-Aqsa mosque complex.
The statement comes as at least 41 Palestinians, including five minors, were killed by Israeli forces Monday. More than 770 Palestinians were wounded in protests in the Gaza Strip
The Turkish foreign ministry condemned in a statement the U.S. decision to relocate its embassy to Jerusalem, saying it violated international law and damaged the peace process. It also slammed Israel: “We curse the massacre carried out by Israeli security forces encouraged by this step on the Palestinians participating in peaceful demonstrations.”
The foreign minister, Mevlut Cavusoglu, called Israel’s actions “state terror.”
Monday’s statement by Foreign Ministry condemned what it said “the use of force against peaceful marches.”
It has also warned of the “negative repercussion of such serious escalation in the Palestinian occupied territories.”
The European Union’s foreign policy chief is calling on Israel to respect the “principle of proportionality in the use of force,” after Israeli soldiers shot and killed at least 41 Palestinians during mass protests along the Gaza border.
Federica Mogherini said Monday that all should act “with utmost restraint to avoid further loss of life” and added that “Israel must respect the right to peaceful protest.”
The pan-Arab satellite news network Al-Jazeera says one of its reporters has been wounded while covering demonstrations in Gaza.
Qatar-based Al-Jazeera reported Monday afternoon that journalist Wael Dhadouh was “injured by live ammunition from Israeli forces.”
It did not elaborate in a tweet announcing Dhadouh’s injury.
Addressing the opening ceremony of the new American Embassy in Jerusalem, Benjamin Netanyahu called it a “glorious” day.
Netanyahu thanked President Donald Trump for showing the “courage” to keep a key campaign promise and says relations with the U.S. have never been stronger.
He says Mideast peace must be founded on what he says is the “truth” recognized by the U.S.
“The truth is that Jerusalem has been and always will be the capital of the Jewish people, the capital of the Jewish state,” he said.
Israel’s military says it has carried out five airstrikes in Gaza after militants exchanged fire with soldiers.
He said troops exchanged fire with militants on 3 separate occasions.
Jared Kushner says Palestinians participating in Gaza border protests are “part of the problem and not part of the solution.”
As he spoke, deadly protests continued along Gaza’s border with Israel. With over 40 dead, it was the deadliest round of cross-border violence since a 2014 war and left Kushner’s peace efforts in tatters.
“As we have seen from the protests of the last month and even today those provoking violence are part of the problem and not part of the solution,” he said.
He says the “journey to peace started with a strong America recognizing the truth.”
Dozens of police blocked the street near the compound, preventing the protesters from getting closer.
The embassy was moved from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem after President Donald Trump recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s capital in December. The decision infuriated Palestinians, who seek east Jerusalem as a future capital.
In a videotaped message to the opening ceremony Monday, Trump said the new embassy has “been a long time coming.” Moving the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem from Tel Aviv was one of Trump’s key campaign promise that was welcomed by Israel.
But the move has infuriated the Palestinians, who claim east Jerusalem as their capital and have said that the move disqualifies the U.S. as a Mideast peace mediator.
Trump said his “greatest hope” is for peace. He said the United States “remains fully committed to facilitating a lasting peace agreement.”
Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri calls the U.S. decision to move its embassy to Jerusalem a “provocative” act that closes the doors for any attempts to reach peace between the Israel and Palestinians.
Hariri in a series of tweets Monday said he regrets “this decision that is igniting the anger of millions of Arabs, Muslims and Christians.” He said Lebanon denounces the “provocative” decision that is deepening the conflict and allowing the “Israelis to spill more blood of innocent Palestinians and increases the intensity of extremism that threatens the world community.”
The embassy move comes on day marking Israel’s creation 70 years ago, a day Arabs call the “nakba” or catastrophe, in reference to the displacement of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians who fled or were expelled from what is now Israel. Lebanon was one of the Arab countries to receive many of the Palestinian refugees. Today, there are more than 170,000 Palestinian refugees living in Lebanon.
Iran’s foreign minister is calling today’s opening of the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem “a day of great shame.”
Mohammad Javad Zarif on Monday wrote on Twitter: “Israeli regime massacres countless Palestinians in cold blood as they protest in the world’s largest open air prison. Meanwhile, Trump celebrates move of U.S. illegal embassy and his Arab collaborators move to divert attention.”
Zarif likely was referring to Gulf Arab countries, which so far haven’t commented on Israeli fire killing at least 37 Palestinians during mass protests along the Gaza border as officials marked the opening of the embassy.
Zarif wrote the tweet as he’s traveling abroad to try to keep other world powers in the Iran nuclear deal following Trump’s decision last week to pull America from the 2015 accord.
American and Israeli delegations have begun a festive ceremony to mark the opening of the new U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem.
Jared Kushner and his wife Ivanka Trump, both top aides to President Donald Trump, are leading a high-powered American delegation that also includes the treasury secretary and four Republican senators.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is also in the audience.
The ceremony was taking place as Palestinians are holding a mass protest on the Gaza border with Israel. Some 37 people were killed on Monday, in the deadliest day of cross-border violence since a 2014 war.
The head of the United Nations says he is worried about the news coming from Gaza, “with the high number of people killed.”
U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres expressed his concerns Monday in Vienna, as clashes were taking place along the Israeli-Palestinian border and senior aides to U.S. President Donald Trump were in Jerusalem celebrating the opening of the new U.S. embassy there.
Guterres said, “I’m particularly worried about the news coming from Gaza with the high number of people killed.”
The Gaza Health Ministry announced Monday afternoon that the death toll of Palestinians killed by Israeli fire had risen to 37.
Pastor Robert Jeffress says “it’s sad” that former presidential candidate Mitt Romney lashed out at him ahead of the inauguration of the U.S. embassy in Jerusalem.
Jeffress said “I think it’s sad that Mitt feels the need to lash out in anger on such a historic day but it’s not going to overshadow what is happening here.”
Speaking to The Associated Press before he was set to deliver the blessing at the opening ceremony Monday, Jeffress said things attributed to him have been taken out of context.
Mitt Romney had previously denounced Jeffress as a “religious bigot.”
Jeffress, leader of a Dallas-area Baptist church and a spiritual adviser to President Donald Trump, has drawn criticism for calling Islam and Mormonism “a heresy from the pit of hell” and saying Jews “can’t be saved.”
As the Gaza Health Ministry announced that the death toll of Palestinians killed by Israeli fire had risen to 37, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told Fox News that Monday was an “incredible, momentous day” and said it was “great honor” to lead the dedication ceremony on Trump’s behalf.
Mnuchin also said “it’s not coincidental” that the opening of the new embassy coincided with Trump’s announcement that he planned to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal.
The ministry says at least 448 Palestinians were shot and wounded Monday, while hundreds more suffered other types of injuries, including from tear gas.
The violence made it the deadliest day in Gaza since the devastating cross-border war between the territory’s Hamas rulers and Israel four years ago, and clouded the opening of the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem.
The deaths brought to 79 the number of Palestinians killed by Israeli soldiers firing from across the border fence since mass border protests began in late March. More than 2,200 Gaza residents have been wounded in that time by Israeli fire.
Witnesses say that in one area, north of Jerusalem, soldiers are firing live bullets, tear gas and rubber-coated steel pellets. A second clash was reported between Jerusalem and Bethlehem. There were no immediate reports of injuries.
Earlier Monday, several thousand gathered in the West Bank city of Ramallah to protest the inauguration of a new U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem later that day.
Palestinians are also marking the 70th anniversary of the “nakba,” or catastrophe, when hundreds of thousands were expelled or fled in the Mideast war over Israel’s 1948 creation.
Irish Foreign Minister Simon Coveney said Monday that the move “is inflaming already a very tense situation, and the relationship between Israelis and Palestinians.”
His Dutch counterpart, Stef Blok, said “we don’t consider it a wise decision to move the embassy.”
Their comments come after the Czech Republic, Hungary and Romania blocked the full 28-nation European Union from publishing a statement about the U.S. move.
The U.S. is to formally inaugurate the embassy later Monday.
The deaths brought to 67 the number of Palestinians killed by Israeli soldiers firing from across the border fence since mass border protests began in late March. More than 2,000 Gaza residents have been wounded in that time by Israeli fire.
Ismail Radwan spoke as thousands rallied near the border fence Monday in the largest protest since his Islamic militant group launched a campaign in late March to break the decade-old blockade of the territory.
By mid-day Monday, 18 Palestinians had been killed and close to 500 wounded by Israeli soldiers firing from across the border fence. Israel has said it will block a possible breach of the border at any cost.
Since March, 60 Palestinians have been killed in the unrest along the border.
The Israeli military says troops shot and killed three Palestinians who were trying to place an explosive device by the border fence in Gaza during mass protests.
The shooting in the southern Gaza town of Rafah came as thousands of Palestinians protested at the border against the relocation of the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem and against a decade-long blockade of Hamas-ruled Gaza by Israel and Egypt.
The Palestinian Health Ministry in Gaza says at least 18 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli fire.
The Israeli military says over 35,000 protesters are taking part in demonstrations at 12 points along the Gaza border.
Monday’s deaths bring to 60 the number of protesters killed since mass border protests against a decade-old blockade of the Hamas-ruled territory began in late March.
The rising death toll is bound to overshadow the festive inauguration of a U.S. Embassy in contested Jerusalem later Monday. Palestinians say the embassy opening is a show of blatant pro-Israel bias by the Trump administration.
Monday’s bloodshed will likely revive international criticism of open-fire rules that allow soldiers to use lethal force against unarmed protesters.
Israel says it has the right to defend its border and that it will block a border breach at any cost.
The Cairo-based Arab League called on the international community to oppose what it considers an “unjust decision” and the ongoing “Israeli occupation” of the city.
It called the move a “blatant attack on the feelings of Arabs and Muslims,” and a “grave violation of the rules of international law” that would destabilize the region.
The Palestinians, who claim east Jerusalem as the capital of their future state, have called for an urgent meeting at the Arab League on Wednesday to discuss the matter.
Egypt’s Al-Azhar religious institution called on the international community to use “all peaceful means” to “dismiss positions of countries that sided with the Zionist entity,” referring to Israel.
The U.S. is to formally inaugurate the embassy in Jerusalem later on Monday. The Palestinians are holding mass protests along the Gaza border to condemn the move, and to try to break a decade-old blockade of the Hamas-ruled territory by Israel and Egypt.
Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov on Monday described the relocation of the embassy as “short-sighted.”
Bogdanov said in an interview with the Interfax news agency that the decision “runs against the stance of most of the international community.” He blamed the U.S. for “a sharp escalation around Gaza” and said the relocation of the U.S. embassy “could spark large-scale confrontations between Palestinians and the Israelis and cause a rising number of casualties.”
Monday’s deaths bring to 58 the number of protesters killed since mass border protests against a decade-old blockade of the Hamas-ruled territory began in late March.
Israel has said it will prevent a border breach at any cost. A growing casualty toll Monday was bound to revive international criticism of open-fire rules under which soldiers are permitted to shoot anyone approaching the border fence.
Rights groups have said such rules are unlawful. Israel says it has the right to defend its border.
Lebanon’s militant Hezbollah group says the U.S. decision to move the American embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem is a unilateral step “that Palestinians will not accept and therefore it is worthless.”
The group’s deputy leader, Sheikh Naim Kassem, made his comments in a speech in Beirut on Monday marking the 70th anniversary of what Arabs refer to as the “nakba” or catastrophe, when hundreds of thousands of Palestinians fled or were expelled from what is now Israel during the 1948 war around Israel’s creation.
Kassem added that “God willing, the nakba that happened 70 years ago will be a motive for change and liberation.”
The U.S. is to formally inaugurate the embassy in Jerusalem later on Monday. The Palestinians are holding mass protests along the Gaza border to condemn the move, and to try to break a decade-old blockade of the Hamas-ruled territory by Israel and Egypt.
Monday’s deaths bring to 49 the number of Palestinians killed during mass border marches that began in late March and are aimed at breaking a decade-old blockade of the territory.
The ministry says 500 people were wounded Monday, including at least 69 by live fire.
Israel has said it would prevent a potential breach of the Gaza border at all costs. It has drawn international criticism for what rights groups say are unlawful open-fire rules. Israel says it has the right to defend its border.
Texas Senator Ted Cruz says President Donald Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital will go down in history as a moment akin to President Harry Truman recognizing Israel when it was established in 1948.
Trump’s former Republican presidential rival says Monday that it was “the right decision” and had already inspired Guatemala, Paraguay and perhaps others to follow suit. Cruz is in Israel as part of a congressional delegation for the embassy’s dedication in Jerusalem.
Previous U.S. presidents of both parties, as well as nearly every other country, refrained from opening embassies in Jerusalem, arguing that the city’s final status should first be resolved through Israeli-Palestinian negotiations.
The ministry said Monday that nine of the wounded are in serious condition. It says the man who was killed was 21 years old and was shot near the southeastern town of Khan Younis. It says several dozen other protesters were overcome by tear gas.
Thousands of Palestinians are protesting near Gaza’s border with Israel, and the territory’s Hamas leaders have suggested a border breach is possible. Israel has warned it would block such a breach at any cost.
Lt. Col. Jonathan Conricus says forces have been “massively reinforced” along the front lines of the border. But he says additional layers of forces have been stationed inside Israeli communities, and between communities, to defend Israeli civilians in case of a breach.
Conricus said Monday that “even if the fence is breached, we will be able to protect Israeli civilians from attempts to massacre or kidnap or kill them.”
Ayelet Shaked says Monday that with his move Trump has “reversed Chamberlain’s policy of capitulation” and shown the world that “the landowner has returned.”
Previous U.S. presidents of both parties, as well as nearly every other country, refrained from opening embassies in Jerusalem, arguing that the city’s final status should first be resolved through Israeli-Palestinian negotiations. Shaked appeared to be comparing that policy to British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain’s appeasement of the Nazis prior to World War II, suggesting Trump was like his successor, Winston Churchill, who led the war effort.
Shaked, from the pro-settler Jewish Home party, bashed Europe for not learning from history. She says it “closed its eyes to the strengthening of the Nazis, today it is choosing to close its eyes to the strengthening of Iran.”
Trump has been lauded by Israelis and condemned by Palestinians for moving the embassy to the contested city. The Palestinians seek its eastern sector as their future capital and say the move removes the U.S. as an impartial arbiter.
Trump’s decision in December to go forward with a campaign promise to move the American embassy from Tel Aviv to contested Jerusalem was welcomed by Israel and condemned by the Palestinians. Previous presidents had signed a waiver postponing the move, citing national security.
Israel captured east Jerusalem in the 1967 Mideast war and annexed it in a move not recognized by the international community. The Palestinians seek the city’s eastern half as capital of a future state and say the move shows the U.S. is not an impartial peace negotiator.
Israeli troops firing from across a border fence have shot and wounded two Palestinians as a protest near the Gaza border gets underway.
Gaza residents streamed to the border area Monday for what is intended to be the largest protest yet against a decade-old blockade of the territory. Israel’s military says it will stop a possible border breach at all costs, warning protesters that they are endangering their lives.
Near Gaza City, hundreds gathered about 150 meters (yards) from the fence. A reporter witnessed two people being shot in the legs.
Protester Mohammed Hamami, 40, says the march is a “message to Israel and its allies that we will never give up on our land.” Most Gaza residents are descendants of refugees from the Mideast war over Israel’s 1948 creation.
In a statement published late Sunday, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said the U.S. disregarded “rights and justice,” ignoring the international community. The new embassy is to be officially inaugurated on Monday.
Erdogan says the move serves to “reward” the Israeli government despite it undermining efforts to resolve the decades-long conflict, while it “punished” Palestinians. Erdogan says: “History and humanity will never forgive the injustices done to our Palestinian brothers.”
Erdogan has been vehemently critical of the U.S. decision and hosted an extraordinary summit of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation in December to condemn the move.
The Turkish president called on Israel to act “responsibly and with moderation” during possible protests on Monday to ensure no one’s killed.
The English-language, government-aligned Gulf News called Monday “a sad day” in a front-page headline over a cartoon by the slain Palestinian cartoonist Naji al-Ali of a crying Palestinian woman behind barbed wire. Al-Ali, a critic of both Israeli and Arab governments, was fatally shot in London in 1987.
In an editorial, the Dubai-based Gulf News said: “This is a day when the United States and the administration of President Donald Trump should hang its head in shame.” It called Trump’s decision “a purely political move to appease his friends on the Manhattan party circuit” and said “Jerusalem’s status is non-negotiable.”
The Gulf News regularly datelines news reports as being from “Occupied Jerusalem.”
In The National, an English-language, government-aligned newspaper in Abu Dhabi, editor-in-chief Mina al-Oraibi wrote: “Rather than ignoring history and historic rights, courage and immediate intervention is needed to save the heart of the Arab world.’”
Iran’s semi-official ISNA news agency on Monday quoted Ali Larijani as saying: “Definitely their measures on moving their embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem and Iran’s nuclear issue will not go unchallenged. These sorts of actions will increase tension in the region and the world.”
Larijani urged Muslim countries to take more serious measures in response to President Donald Trump’s “wrong and unwise decision” to move the embassy to Jerusalem. The city’s future status is one of the most divisive issues in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Larijani’s comments come nearly a week after Trump pulled America out of the nuclear deal Iran struck with world powers in 2015.
Witnesses say Israeli drones have dropped incendiary materials, setting ablaze tires that had been collected for use in a planned Gaza border protest.
They say the drones set tires ablaze in two locations early Monday, releasing large clouds of black smoke.
In weekly protests since March, Gaza activists have been using the thick smoke from burning tires as a cover against Israeli snipers on the other side of the fence.
Mosques called on people to head for the border. A general strike was observed, with shops and markets closed. Buses deployed outside mosques to pick up protesters.
Israel’s military says it will stop any border breach.
Former Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney has denounced the choice of a “religious bigot” to deliver the blessing at the opening of the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem.
Pastor Robert Jeffress, leader of a Dallas-area Baptist church and a spiritual adviser to President Donald Trump, is slated to deliver a blessing on Monday at the opening of the relocated embassy.
Jeffress has drawn criticism for calling Islam and Mormonism “a heresy from the pit of hell” and saying Jews “can’t be saved.”
A senior aide to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has sharply criticized President Donald Trump over his decision to open a U.S. Embassy in contested Jerusalem, saying the American administration is “based on lies.”
Erekat says the Trump administration has “become part of the problem.” He suggested Trump’s Mideast team is unqualified, saying “the world needs real leaders, and those (White House officials) are real estate dealers, not leaders.”
Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary has expressed concern that the relocation of the U.S. Embassy in Israel could escalate tensions in the Middle East.
Yoshihide Suga said Monday that “Japan is concerned that the move could make peace process in the Middle East even more difficult or escalate tension in all of the Middle East.” He says Japan will watch the development with great interest.
Suga stopped short of criticizing the U.S., and said that Japan takes note of Washington’s pledge that the issue of Jerusalem’s status should be resolved between the concerned parties.
He stressed that Japan’s position is that the disputes and Jerusalem’s status should be resolved via negotiations between Israelis and Palestinians. Suga added that Japan hopes to contribute in its own way to the region’s peace by promoting trust and dialogue between the two parties through various projects.
The relocation of the embassy from Tel Aviv to contested Jerusalem has been welcomed by Israel but condemned by the Palestinians, who want their capital to be in east Jerusalem and view the decision as a blatantly one-sided move on one of the thorniest disputes in the conflict.
Jason Greenblatt writes on Twitter that “the long-overdue step of moving our Embassy is not a departure from our strong commitment to facilitate a lasting peace deal.”
Israel captured east Jerusalem in the 1967 Mideast war and annexed it in a move not recognized internationally. The Palestinians want east Jerusalem as the capital of their future state. They view the relocation as a blatant, one-sided move that invalidates America’s role as an impartial peace broker.
The army says in the leaflets dropped by jets Monday that it will “act against every attempt to damage the security fence or harm IDF soldiers or Israeli civilians.”
Gaza’s ruling Hamas says it expects tens of thousands to join Monday’s march, suggesting a possible border breach. The march is part of a campaign to break Gaza’s decade-old border blockade. It’s also a protest against the inauguration Monday of a U.S. Embassy in contested Jerusalem.
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