On December 6, Palestine’s President Mahmoud Abbas denounced in a televised speech a decision of US President Donald Trump to recognize the city of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. He stressed that Jerusalem is the “eternal” capital of the Palestinian state.
“The decision by President Trump will not change the reality of the city of Jerusalem and will not give any legitimacy to the Israelis on this issue,” said Abbas during his speech.
The Palestine president also said that the US can no longer be a mediator in the Israeli-Palestinian peace process and stressed that the Trump’s decision is against all the international laws and agreements. Moreover, Abbas revealed that all Palestinian factions will meet in the upcoming days to discuss Trump’s decision and to show the unity of in the face of this situation.
Abba’s speech was described by many Arab analysts as “weak” and even shameful as the Palestinian president didn’t announce any measures against Trump’s decision. Many Palestinian activists had hoped that Abbas would at least freeze the Israeli-Palestinian peace process as a form of protest. However, it appears that the Palestinian president was not so triggered by Trump’s decision.
Meanwhile, spokesman for the Palestinian Hamas Movement warned that Trump’s decision as well as the intent to move the US embassy to Jerusalem “opens the gates of hell” on the US interests in the region.
“Trump’s decision on Jerusalem will not succeed in changing the fact that Jerusalem is an Arab Muslim land,” a Hamas Movement spokesman said from Gaza Strip after Trump’s announcement.
The movement also called on Palestinians to protest in a “day of rage” on December 8. Palestinian activists believe that the coming days will witness violent protests all over Gaza Strip and the Western Bank, as the Palestinian streets are boiling after Trump’s decision.
If Israeli security forces respond to the Palestinian protestors with a violent crackdown, the situation in Israel could quickly escalate. A military escalation between Israel and the Hamas movement in Gaza Strip is also highly possible.