Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Wednesday declared East Jerusalem as the capital of Palestine and called for “economic and political boycott” as a counter to “measures aimed at perpetuating Israeli colonization of the occupied Palestinian territories.”
The OIC which consists of 57 Muslim countries and describes itself as “collective voice of the Muslim world” also invited all the countries to “recognize the State of Palestine and East Jerusalem as its occupied capital”, said the final communique unveiled at the conclusion of an emergency summit called by Turskish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan following US President Donald Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital
The heads of states and governments present at the summit “reject and condemn in the strongest terms” the unilateral decision by US President Donald Trump to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, the communiqué said.
The OIC has asked member states to “impose political and economic restrictions on States, officials, parliaments, companies and individuals recognizing Israeli annexation of Al-Quds Al-Sharif, or engaging in any form with measures aimed at perpetuating Israeli colonization of the occupied Palestinian territories.”
The OIC communique declared Trump’s move “null and void” and considered it an “attack” on the rights of the Palestinian people. It accused the US of “deliberately undermining” peace efforts and warned that it has given “impetus to extremism and terrorism”.
The communique said Washington will be held “fully liable for all the consequences of not retracting from this illegal decision”.
The leaders at the summit asked the UN to assume its responsibilities and reaffirm the city’s legal position.
The Organization called on the Arab Muslim world to join efforts, regionally and worldwide, to harness all the diplomatic means available to counter such measures and face up to the US unilateral decision rejected by most of the world countries.
Earlier, Erdogan, speaking at the summit, described Israel as a state defined by “occupation” and “terror”.
“With this decision, Israel was rewarded for all the terrorist activities it has carried out. It is Trump who bestowed this award even,” he said.
Erdogan added: “I am inviting the countries who value international law and fairness to recognise occupied Jerusalem as the capital of Palestine,” saying Islamic countries would “never give up” on this demand.
“America, you might think you are strong, you might have weapons, nuclear weapons, you might have many aircraft,” he said.
“But none of this means you are strong. You are only strong if you are right. The US is buttering the bread of fanatics with this decision.”
Jordan’s king, Abdullah, was seen vigorously nodding in agreement with Erdogan’s remarks.
Palestine leader Mahmoud Abbas warned that there could be “no peace or stability” in the Middle East until Jerusalem is recognised as the capital of a Palestinian state.
“Jerusalem is and will forever be the capital of the Palestinian state… There will be no peace, no stability without that,” Abbas told the meeting.
He slammed the recognition by Trump of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel as a “gift” to the “Zionist movement” as if he “were giving away an American city,” adding that Washington no longer had any role to play in the Middle East peace process.
“We do not accept any role of the United States in the political process from now on. Because it is completely biased towards Israel,” he said.
The Istanbul summit was attended by just over 20 heads of state with Saudi Arabia sending only their minister for religious affairs to the summit, according to Al Jazeera.
Saudi allies Egypt and Bahrain followed suit by sending representatives at the foreign ministerial level only, according to a report in the Middleeasteye.com.