LAHORE: Chief Minister Punjab Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif Thursday strongly condemned President Trump’s decision to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. He said that the religious sentiments of 1.5 billion Muslims of the world had deeply been hurt by the US decision to move its embassy from Tel Aviv to the holy city of Jerusalem.
He said that instead of ‘advancing the peace process, the US move had dealt the severest blow to the efforts at peace, stating that the Palestinians had been deceived once again.
He said the decision of the Trump administration had reinforced the Palestinians’ lack of trust in the honesty of Washington as a trusted and fair-minded peace broker.
According to a handout, the chief minister said, “When one of the parties to decades-old conflict demonstrates a massive no-confidence and feels to have been stabbed in the back, there is no way a peace process can bear fruit.” He said, with this reckless and irresponsible US policy reversal, the goal of finding a two-state solution had become even more distant.
He said, the world had rightly been outraged by the action of the Trump Administration, whose understanding of history was fickle and self-serving. The chief minister endorsed President Erdogan’s comment wherein the Turkish leader had said that by recognising Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, the US had crossed the ‘red-line’ for Muslims. He warned that the step had opened old wounds and exposed Middle East to a new era of fresh uncertainty and chaos.
He said, the world could ill-afford such narrow-minded policies that seemed to insult the intelligence of the people. He said, the Palestinians’ right to have an independent homeland of their own was sanctioned by the United Nations resolutions and the world conscience.
Instead of taking steps to reignite peace process, the United States under President Trump had complicated the regional situation that had graver implications for the world peace in general and the stability and peace of Middle East in particular.
The chief minister reiterated the resolve that the government and the people of Pakistan would continue to extend every possible support to the Palestinian cause at every level.
He underlined the need for a collective response at the level of OIC to the latest policy announcement of the Trump Administration.
Story first published: 7th December 2017