CAIRO, Sunday, February 12, 2023 (WAFA) – In the presence of President Mahmoud Abbas and other high-profile Arab and world leaders, the Conference in Support of Jerusalem kick-started today at the Arab League headquarters in Cairo to discuss support to the Palestinians of Jerusalem living under Israeli colonial rule.
The conference, which comes in implementation of the recommendations of the recent Algiers Summit, aims to support and strengthen the steadfastness of the Palestinian people of Jerusalem as the first line of defense for the occupied city on behalf of the Arab and Islamic nations.
The conference also presents the issue of Jerusalem to the world public opinion, especially in view of the ongoing systematic Israeli violations and crimes that aim to empty the city of its Palestinian people, in addition to attempts to Judaize Al-Aqsa Mosque.
The Arab League said that it was keen that the economic and investment dimension be present in parallel with the legal axis, given the fact that promoting investment in Jerusalem and its Old City is a key to reinforcing the resilience and steadfastness of the city’s Palestinian people.
President Abbas: Palestinians will remain committed to their national rights
Addressing the conference, President Mahmoud Abbas stressed the Palestinian people and leadership will remain committed to their national rights, and will confront with all strength the plans of the most racist and extremist Israeli government targeting Al-Aqsa Mosque and all our sanctities.
The President pointed out that in the next few days, the State of Palestine will go to the United Nations and its various bodies to demand a resolution confirming the protection of the two-state solution by granting the State of Palestine full membership in the United Nations.
He said the State of Palestine will also the UN bodies to call for an end to the Israeli unilateral actions, especially settlement construction, and for Israel to adhere to the signed agreements and resolutions of international legitimacy.
The President affirmed that the State of Palestine reserves its right to go to international courts and organizations to protect the legitimate rights of our people.
“Supporting Jerusalem and strengthening the steadfastness of those staying there and in its environs is a religious duty and a humanitarian and national imperative,” said the President.
He pointed out that “the battle raging over Jerusalem did not only begin on the day of its occupation in 1967, but several decades prior to that, and even before the Balfour Declaration which was issued by the colonial powers, led by Britain and America”. The Declaration, said the President, was aimed at “getting rid of the Jews in Europe and establishing the so-called Jewish national home in Palestine, to be an outpost to safeguard the interests of these colonial countries.”
The President affirmed: “Just as our people rejected the Balfour Declaration and its results, we also rejected all attempts to liquidate our cause or falsify the facts about it. We rejected the deal of the century, and we refused - and we still refuse - to move the US embassy or any other embassy to Jerusalem.”
The President praised the initiative launched by Qudsna Foundation under the auspices of Sheikh Abdul Aziz bin Abdul Rahman Al Thani and the Jerusalem Endowment Fund, which has mobilized $70 million in funding for Islamic Waqf projects in Jerusalem, calling on everyone to contribute to strengthening this important initiative and others like it, in support of the steadfastness of our people in Jerusalem and Palestine.
King Abdullah II: Palestinian cause will remain at forefront of all Arab priorities
King Abdullah said the topic of the meeting “is close to the hearts of all Arabs”, noting that Jerusalem is the First Qibla for Muslims, and that the region cannot live in peace, stability, and prosperity without any progress made on the Palestinian cause.
“We reiterate that preserving the prospects of peace, on the basis of the two-state solution, demands ceasing all Israeli violations, incursions into Al Aqsa Mosque/Al Haram Al Sharif, and attempts for temporal and spatial division,” His Majesty said.
The King warned that any attempt to alter the historical and legal status quo will have negative ramifications on the security and stability of the entire region.
Reaffirming Jordan’s support for the Palestinians, he called on the international community to guarantee their just and legitimate rights to establish an independent, viable, and sovereign Palestinian state, on the 4 June 1967 lines, with East Jerusalem as its capital.
The King said Jordan continues to exert all efforts under the Hashemite Custodianship to safeguard Islamic and Christian holy sites in Jerusalem, including maintenance and restoration projects in Al Aqsa Mosque and Church of the Holy Sepulchre.
“This is the legacy of the Prophet Mohammad, as inherited by the Hashemites through my great-great-grandfather Sharif Hussein bin Ali, when he answered the call of the Palestinians, over a century ago,” the King stressed.
Within this historical responsibility, His Majesty said the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan supports “our Christian brothers and sisters in Jerusalem, as they seek to protect their churches and counter violations against their holy sites.”
“We reaffirm our commitment to the Pact of Omar, which has guaranteed harmony and coexistence in Jerusalem for over 1,400 years,” the King added.
El-Sisi reiterates Egypt's rejection of any measures to change status quo of Jerusalem
Egypt's President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi reiterated the country's rejection and condemnation of any Israeli measures to change the historical and legal status quo of the city of Jerusalem and its sanctities.
The Egyptian President also underscored the importance of the Hashemite Custodianship, referring to the Jordanian royal family’s historical responsibility to maintain Islamic and Christian holy places in Jerusalem, including Al-Aqsa Mosque as a place of worship exclusively for Muslims.
"Egypt repeats its warning of the dire consequences that may result from a breach of this or an attempt to pre-empt or impose a fait accompli that negatively affects the prospects for final status negotiations between the Palestinian and Israeli sides," El-Sisi said at the Arab League's (AL) Jerusalem Support conference in Cairo on Sunday.
El-Sisi said the critical conditions facing the Palestinian cause jeopardise regional security and the concept of coexistence among the peoples of the region. They also obstruct the two-state solution and force the two parties and the entire Middle East to make tough and dangerous choices.
El-Sisi referred to the continuation of "unilateral measures and the violation of international legitimacy including settlements, demolition of houses, forced displacement, confiscation of land, the systematic Judaisation of Jerusalem as well as illegitimate storming of Al-Aqsa Mosque."
This is in addition to the ongoing storming of Palestinian cities in a manner that only escalates tension on the ground and threatens the security situation, he added.
The Egyptian president highlighted the international resolutions that protect the legal status of Jerusalem, including the UN Security Council's non-recognition of any changes to the 1967 borders, including with regard to Jerusalem, except for what is agreed upon through negotiation.
Aboul Gheit: The aim of the conference is to support the steadfastness of Jerusalemites
The Secretary-General of the League of Arab States, Ahmed Aboul Gheit, said that the aim of the conference is to support the steadfastness of the people of Jerusalem, pointing out that Jerusalem is under occupation, and no one can change this fact under an extremist government.
And he continued: "We want the world to see the reality as it is, shameful and terrifying, and to realize the seriousness of what the occupation is seeking to perpetuate in East Jerusalem, in the Old City, and in the blessed Al-Aqsa."
He stressed that strengthening steadfastness is the duty of every Arab, stressing the need to preserve its historical status, in order to achieve lasting and comprehensive peace, and that the conference is a message to the world of the need to protect Jerusalem from violations committed by the occupation.