Jordan's King Abdullah To Visit Ramallah

08 August, 2017, 00:24 | Author: Ora Austin
  • File Muslim worshipers participate in midday prayers in a parking lot near the Lions Gate in the Old City of Jerusalem refusing to enter the Temple Mount enclosure to reach the Al Aqsa Mosque inside

At a Saturday meeting at Al Husseiniya Palace with leaders of Jordan's Lower House of Parliament, King Abdullah outlined the challenges now faced regarding the Palestinian cause and Jerusalem.

Abdullah has strongly criticized Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's response to the incident, and said that the latter exploited the crisis at the Amman embassy for political purposes.

"This visit comes at a very important time to do a joint assessment on the problem of Israeli attacks against Al Aqsa in Jerusalem and attempts to change the status quo at Al Aqsa", Mr Al Malki said.

The mosque compound is in east Jerusalem, occupied by Israel in 1967 in a move never recognised by the global community.

The visit came less than two weeks after the end of a standoff at the Al-Aqsa mosque compound in Jerusalem where Israel had imposed new security measures, including metal detectors, following an attack that killed two policemen.

The rare visit is seen as a closing of ranks on a key issue - the fate of a contested Jerusalem shrine at the center of recent Israeli-Jordanian and Israeli-Palestinian tensions.

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After flying by military helicopter to Abbas's muqata presidential compound and being greeted by Abbas, the king reviewed an honor guard and the Jordanian and Palestinian national anthems were played before the two headed into talks.

The Palestinian Authority received Jordanian and Arab positions positively during the Al-Aqsa crisis, but warned that Israel had not halted its plots for Jerusalem and Al-Aqsa.

Last week, a speech Mr Kushner gave to congressional interns was leaked to the U.S. tech news website Wired.

About half of Jordan's 9.5 million citizens are of Palestinian origin.

They called for the termination of the 1994 peace treaty between Israel and Jordan as well as withdrawing from the gas deal the kingdom struck with Tel Aviv in September 2016. In this regard, the Monarch said there would be no breakthrough in the peace process without a United States push for a solution. The speech alarmed Palestinians and prompted PLO executive committee member Hanan Ashrawi to say Mr Kushner had "disqualified himself" from being a U.S. peace envoy. "His Majesty said that what is desired is to intensify efforts to make progress during the coming period".

This is Abdullah's first visit to the Palestinian city in the past five years.

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