Turkey on Monday blasted the U.S. veto of a UN resolution that would have required President Donald Trump to rescind his declaration of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital,
A statement by the Turkish Foreign Ministry which was quoted by The Associated Press said Washington had lost its “impartiality” in the Middle East.
The fact that the resolution was approved by the 14 other Security Council members, the ministry said, is “the most concrete indication of the illegitimacy” of the U.S. decision on Jerusalem.
The statement added that the veto had left the UN Security Council “in a state of failure” and said Turkey would continue to stand by the “Palestinian state and its people.”
The resolution which Washington vetoed had called on “all States to refrain from the establishment of diplomatic missions in the Holy City of Jerusalem” in order to prevent the fulfillment of President Trump’s pledge to relocate the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
The text also demanded that all states “comply with Security Council resolutions regarding the Holy City of Jerusalem, and not recognize any actions or measures contrary to those resolutions.”
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has been among the most vocal critics of Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.
He had previously warned the United States not to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, or to move the embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, saying that any change to the status quo vis-à-vis Jerusalem would constitute a “red line” for Muslims. He also threatened that his country would sever ties with Israel if Trump went through with the move.
Earlier this week, Erdogan vowed that his country would open an embassy to a Palestinian state in eastern Jerusalem, despite the city being a sovereign part of Israel.
“We have already declared East Jerusalem as the capital of the Palestinian state but we haven’t been able to open our embassy there because Jerusalem is currently under occupation. God willing we will open our embassy there,” he declared.
Israel and Turkey signed a comprehensive reconciliation deal last year, ending a six-year diplomatic standoff following a violent encounter between Israeli soldiers and Islamist radicals on a ship attempting to break through the security blockade on Gaza.
However, Erdogan has consistently attacked Israel, even after the reconciliation deal was signed.
In May, Erdogan spoke out angrily over legal plans in Israel to prevent the use of loudspeakers on minarets to summon Muslims for nightly prayers.
In July, the Turkish leader accused Israel of harming itself and the region because of its security measures at the Temple Mount.