Without any legal foundation in international law, the United States administration announced the recognition of Jerusalem as the capital city of the state of Israel.
It is imperative to clarify some facts, mainly from a historical point of view to the public so that they better understand what a blunder this announcement has created.
The city of Jerusalem is a holy city for the three monotheistic religions.
The Arab Canaanites who first built it in 3000 BC wanted their city to be the City of Peace as they called it in their ancient language “Ursalem”.
Despite its name, this city had been exposed to many conflicts, most probably more than any other city in the world. Throughout its history, Jerusalem was invaded by the ancient Romans, Persians, western Crusaders who lasted 100 years and, recently, colonial power Britain, which handed over Palestine to Israel.
All these colonial invaders came and went and its original Arab Palestinian people remained. They will also survive this current occupation.
Historically speaking, Arab Palestinians stayed in Palestine and Jerusalem continuously and gave the city its cultural character.
The most unreserved historical sources state that Jewish rule in Palestine lasted 100 years during the era of King David and his son, Solomon, and their progeny from 1050 BC until 950 AD before it was destroyed by the Persian invasion and the Roman occupation which lasted until it was removed by Arab Islamic rule in 638 AD.
The Arab Islamic empire in Palestine lasted 12 centuries and ended with the collapse of the Ottoman Empire.
During this era, the Palestinian society was a model of peaceful co-existence among its different religious affiliations, and the rights of the minorities were preserved.
US President Trump’s decision has no legal basis whatsoever, according to international law. Jerusalem constitutes an integral part of the occupied territories of the State of Palestine.
Therefore, such a decision contradicts international and humanitarian law as well as international treaties on conflict resolution. It goes against United Nations resolutions on the status of Jerusalem, including UNSC resolutions 476 and 478.
This decision has grave consequences as it prejudges the outcome of negotiations on the final status issues that include, besides Jerusalem; borders, refugees, settlements and water issues.
It rewards systematic violations by Israeli occupation against Palestine and its people.
It not only contradicts international legitimacy, but also the fundamental principle of inadmissibility of land acquisition by force as prescribed by the United Nations Charter.
It reverses the long-standing US position towards Jerusalem and its leading role in Middle East peace-making.
The international reaction has shown consensus over Jerusalem, which must be followed by concrete actions to protect the integrity of international law.
The above was provided by the Embassy of the State of Palestine in Zimbabwe
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