Doha Conference – Turkish Minister: Jerusalem has to be freed of Israeli occupation

Atalay described Jerusalem as “a captive city in the hands of Israel,” saying that Israel’s policy is aimed at denying Jerusalem’s thousands-year-old history with Muslims, Christians and Palestinians.

WORLDBULLETIN FEBR 26 2012

Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Besir Atalay has said Jerusalem had to be freed of Israeli occupation if a lasting settlement was to reign in the Middle East.

“Without the liberation of Jerusalem, no real is peace and stability can be achieved in the Middle East or farther afield,” Atalay told the Anadılu Agency in Doha, Qatar, where he was set to participate in the International Conference for Defense of Jerusalem.

Atalay described Jerusalem as “a captive city in the hands of Israel,” saying that Israel’s policy is aimed at denying Jerusalem’s thousands-year-old history with Muslims, Christians and Palestinians.

Atalay said Israel’s excavations in Jerusalem threatened sacred sites in the city, adding that Palestinians in the east Jerusalem were even denied of construction permits on their own soil.

Atalay said, Israel was trying to isolate Jerusalem from other Palestinian territories, adding that the Jewish state was forcing Muslims to leave the city by selective and involuntary settlement.

“Israel’s oppressive attempt is aimed at changing Jerusalem’s historic fabric by intimidating Palestinians. Turkey will not allow that,” Atalay said.

The Doha conference is expected to gather politicians, diplomats, scholars, representatives of UN and other international institutions as well as Muslim, Christian and Jewish religious leaders.

Qatar Amir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani, Palestinian President Mahmood Abbas, Secretary General of the Arab League Nabil Elaraby,Secretary General of the Organization of the Islamic Cooperation Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu, and United Nations Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Robert Serry are among the participants of the event.

The conference will end on Monday with a “Doha Declaration.”

AA


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