- Regrets pleas from States across globe not to alter legal and historical status of Al-Quds Al-Sharif have been ignored
- Says decision represents a serious violation of international law and applicable UN Security Council resolutions
- Says move signals a severe blow to Middle East peace process, calls upon UNSC to take cognisance of situation
- Urges US to revisit decision as soon as possible in order to avoid potentially grave repercussions in region and beyond
ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has joined the international community in expressing its strong opposition and condemnation at the decision of the US Administration to recognise the occupied city of Al Quds Al Sharif/Jerusalem as the so-called capital of Israel and the plan to relocate its Embassy there.
“It is deeply regrettable that pleas from States across the globe not to alter the legal and historical status of Al-Quds Al-Sharif have been ignored, more out of choice than necessity,” said a statement released by the Foreign Office minutes after Trump recognised Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.
“This decision represents a serious violation of international law and applicable UN Security Council resolutions, more specifically UNSCR 478. It is a serious setback to the rule of law and international norms. It signals a severe blow to the Middle East peace process as well,” the statement added.
Pakistan shares the international outrage and is deeply concerned over the implications of this decision for international peace and security, especially in the Middle East, the FO said, adding, Pakistan calls upon the UN Security Council to take cognisance 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 Government of Pakistan welcomes the announcement by Turkey to convene an Extraordinary Islamic Summit next week to discuss this serious issue,” concluded the FO statement.
Earlier in the day, Pakistan expressed concern over the proposed move by the United States to shift its embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, saying “such a step would constitute a clear violation of international law and UN Security Council (UNSC) resolutions”.
Islamabad reaffirmed full solidarity with the Palestinian people.
A statement issued by the Prime Minister Office stated that shifting the US embassy to the “occupied city of Al-Quds Al-Sharif will alter the legal and historical status of the city”.
Meanwhile, Foreign Minister Khawaja, in a tweet, said: “By moving the embassy US will practically alter the status of Jerusalem..An affront to [Palestinians] and the Muslim world… practically burying the [two-state] solution…Will add another wound to already bleeding body of Muslim Ummah.”
By moving the embassy US will practically alter the status of Jerusalem..An affront to Palestisns and the Muslim world.. practically burying the two states solutions..Will add another wound to already bleeding body of Muslim Ummah
— Khawaja M. Asif (@KhawajaMAsif) December 6, 2017
Earlier on Tuesday, US President Donald Trump told Arab leaders that he intends to move the US embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, a decision that breaks with decades of US policy and risks fuelling further unrest in the Middle East.
“It would also sidestep decades of global consensus on this issue, undermine regional peace and security as well as derail any prospects for a lasting peace in the Middle East,” read the PM Office statement.
PM Office said the people and government of Pakistan are unequivocally opposed to the reported plan of shifting the US Embassy, adding that, “Pakistan fully endorses the recently adopted final communique of the Organisation of Islamic Conference (OIC) on this issue.”
Pakistan’s response to reported US move to shift its Embassy to Occupied city of Al-Quds Al-Sharif pic.twitter.com/QDFWgm3QXK
— Dr Mohammad Faisal (@ForeignOfficePk) December 6, 2017
On Monday, the OIC had said that its 57 member states should sever ties with any state that transfers its embassy to Jerusalem or recognises Israel’s annexation of East Jerusalem.
Pakistan has called upon the United States to refrain from any move that alters the legal and historical status as well as the character of Jerusalem, and urged it “fully comply with all applicable UN Security Council resolutions including UNSCR 478”.
“Pakistan renews its call for the establishment of a viable, independent and contiguous State of Palestine, on the basis of internationally agreed parameters, the pre-1967 borders, and with Al-Quds Al-Sharif as its capital,” read the statement.
Senior US officials said Trump is likely to recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital on Wednesday while delaying relocating the embassy from Tel Aviv for another six months, though he is expected to order his aides to begin planning such a move immediately.
Washington’s endorsement of Israel’s claim to all of Jerusalem as its capital would reverse a long-standing policy that the city’s status must be decided in negotiations with the Palestinians, who want East Jerusalem as the capital of their future state.
The international community does not recognise Israeli sovereignty over the entire city, home to sites holy to Islam, Judaism and Christianity.