Turkish presidential spokesman says US recognition of Jerusalem as Israeli capital endangered peace process and isolated US.
The Organization of Islamic Cooperation's (OIC) Istanbul declaration was not "retaliation” for the U.S. decision recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, Turkey’s presidential spokesman said Thursday.
Speaking to state news channel TRT Haber, Ibrahim Kalin said that not only the OIC’s 57 members but also European, Latin American, and Asian countries rejected the U.S. decision.
His remarks came a day after the OIC summit in Istanbul issued a declaration recognizing East Jerusalem as the capital of Palestine.
“Islamic countries are united and strengthened more in the wake of the U.S. decision,” he said.
He said the summit resolved to take other important steps such as bringing the Jerusalem issue to the UN, speeding the process of Palestine’s recognition as a state, merging funds to boost Jerusalem’s economy, and bringing the forgotten cause of Palestine to the international arena.
Kalin also said Turkey’s Consulate in East Jerusalem has already been serving as an embassy.
“It’s important to make this official,” Kalin said.
He underlined that peace and stability in the Middle East is “impossible” without solving the Palestinian issue.
Kalin also said he expected that several issues concerning Palestine such as the two-state solution, ending the occupation, recognition of Jerusalem as its capital, return of Palestinian refugees to their land, and the Middle East peace process would gain fresh momentum after the OIC declaration.
The peace process can be revived at the end of a negotiation process that would follow the establishment of a sustainable Palestinian state, according to Kalin.
He said Turkish officials had warned their U.S. counterparts against Trump’s unilateral decision, as the decision would endanger the peace process and isolate the U.S.