Vladimir Putin and Recep Erdogan today agreed to support the creation of a Palestinian state.
The Russian and Turkish presidents spoke in a phone call a day after the UN rejected Donald Trump’s controversial decision to recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.
A Kremlin statement said the two leaders ‘discussed the situation of Middle East peace talks in the context of the resolution adopted by the UN General Assembly on the status of Jerusalem.’
Vladimir Putin (pictured at a Kremlin meeting yesterday) and Recep Erdogan today agreed to support the creation of a Palestinian state
They ‘confirmed the mutual disposition to continue to assist in resolving the Palestine-Israeli conflict on the basis of international norms and realisation of the right of the Palestinian people to create an independent state.’
Palestinians have long demanded their own state out of lands occupied by Israel since the Six-Day War in 1967.
Russia and Turkey already recognise the State of Palestine as do 70 per cent of countries in the UN. The US, Britain and western European countries do not.
Trump decided on December 6 to recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.
The status of the Holy City is one of the thorniest issues in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, with both sides claiming it as their capital.
On Thursday, the 193-member General Assembly adopted the motion to reject Trump’s decision by 128 to nine with 35 abstentions, though the US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said the vote would make no difference to Washington’s decision.
Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas today said that he would ‘no longer accept’ any peace plan proposed by the United States, dealing a pre-emptive blow to a fresh initiative expected by Washington next year.
US Vice President Mike Pence postponed a trip he was due to make to the region this week, after Palestinian and Arab Christian leaders expressed reluctance to meet him.
Erdogan (pictured in Ankara yesterday) said the UN vote showed the ‘illegality’ of Trump’s decision, urging the United States to withdraw it
‘The United States has proven to be a dishonest mediator in the peace process and we will no longer accept any plan from it,’ Abbas told a joint press conference with French President Emmanuel Macron.
Macron repeated his earlier condemnations of the US decision on Jerusalem, but he also ruled out recognising Palestine as a state unilaterally, which France has mooted previously.
‘The Americans have marginalised themselves and I am trying to not do the same thing,’ Macron said, conscious that any move to recognise Palestine would antagonise the Israelis.
Abbas hit out at efforts by the US to ‘intimidate’ countries ahead of the UN vote.
‘I hope that the others will learn the lesson and understand that you cannot impose solutions by using money and trying to buy off countries,’ he said in Paris.
Erdogan said the UN vote showed the ‘illegality’ of Trump’s decision, urging the United States to withdraw it.
But US Ambassador Nikki Haley said the vote will ‘make no difference’ to US policy.