In a speech by Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh, he called for an intifada – or an uprising – against Israel in response to the decision of United States (US) President Donald Trump to move the American Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem.
“We stand today in front of a historic turning point in our case and from the heart of Jerusalem after this unjust decision taken by the US administration with the alleged recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of the so-called Zionist entity.”
“I say, today, that Palestine is unified from the sea to the river; it cannot be divided on two. We do not recognize the legitimacy of the occupation, and there is no occupation on the land of Palestine to be a capital,” he added.
“Trump’s decision mean an end to a political phase and the start of a new one.”
“We call on the Arab countries to take the decisions awaiting the people of this nation,” he said. He also called for an explicit boycott of the US administration to stand against the violations of the Palestinian rights.
Following Trumps’s announcement, a number of protests took to the streets in Turkey, Jordan, West Bank and Gaza.
All Palestinian factions called for a general strike to stand against this declaration.
In Jordan, the youth took to the streets and chanted anti-American slogans “while in the Baqaa refugee camp on the city’s outskirts, hundreds of protesters roamed the streets denouncing Trump and calling on Jordan’s government to scrap its 1994 peace treaty with Israel,” reports Middle East Eye.
In Turkey, protestors waved the Palestinian flag in front of the US consulate in Istanbul.
Protests erupted in Jerusalem and in Gaza, where activists urged people via mosque speakers to take the streets.
“Palestinians also switched off Christmas lights at the traditional birthplace of Jesus in Bethlehem on Wednesday night” in protest against the declaration, according to Middle East Eye.
In a press conference, Trump said “I am determined that it is time to officially recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel”.
“While previous Presidents have made this a major campaign promise, they failed to deliver. Today, I am delivering. I have judged this course of action to be in the best interests of the United States of America and the pursuit of peace between Israel and the Palestinians,” added President Trump.