Mogherini: Jerusalem is the capital of both Israel and Palestine

New Europe / Alexandros Michailidis

Press conference after the High-Level Political Dialogue meeting between the European Union and Turkey in Brussels, Belgium on Jul. 25, 2017.

Mogherini: Jerusalem is the capital of both Israel and Palestine


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The EU’s diplomatic chief Federica Mogherini repeated on Thursday the EU’s position on the Middle East issues after the U.S. President Donald Trump recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

“The European Union has a clear and united position. We believe the only realistic solution to the conflict between Israel and Palestine is based on two states and with Jerusalem as the capital of both,” EU foreign policy chief Mogherini told a news conference hours after Trump’s announcement.

The EU has expressed serious concern about the announcement by US President and the repercussions this may have on the prospect of peace. The High Representative / Vice President Mogherini, stressed that the EU and its member states will continue to respect the international consensus on Jerusalem embodied in, inter alia, UNSCR 478, including on the location of their diplomatic representations until the final status of Jerusalem is resolved.

Mogherini was bold about the EU’s support towards a two-state solution in the area: “The EU reiterates its firm commitment to the two-state solution and to its existing policies, as set out in its successive Council Conclusions. A negotiated two-state solution, which fulfills the aspirations of both sides, is the only realistic way of bringing the lasting peace and security that both Israelis and Palestinians deserve,” she said.

“The European Union will engage even more with the parties and with our regional and international partners. We will keep working with the Middle East Quartet, possibly in an enlarged format,” said Mogherini, putting together Jordan, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, as well as Norway. “We remain convinced that the role of the United States is crucial,” she said.

On Jordan, Mogherini seems to support King Abdullah’s role as the custodian of the Muslim holy sites in Jerusalem. “King Abdullah, is a very wise man”, said Mogherini, that has already contacted the Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

Erdogan’s move

Mogherini’s choice of Jordan comes after the Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan reacted quickly against Trump’s move in an attempt to secure his position as “chief negotiator” of the Muslim side in the area. Erdogan is on Thursday at an official visit in Athens and said that “Israel and the U.S. are the only states that speak of Jerusalem as a capital,” said the Turkish president. “Jerusalem is the spiritual center, the capital of all three religions. There is nobody else endorsing the decision of the U.S.”

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