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US, Israel ‘inhumane moves’ will bolster Palestinian resistance, Rouhani tells Erdogan

Mourners carry the body of a Palestinian killed during a protest at the Gaza border, during his funeral in the central Gaza Strip on May 16, 2018. (Photo by Reuters)

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani says the US is wrong to think that it can dent the Palestinian nation’s resistance through supporting the Israeli regime, adding that “provocative moves” by the US and Israel will only further unite Palestinians.

In a phone conversation with his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Wednesday, Rouhani said that the US move to transfer its embassy to Jerusalem al-Quds was “illegal” and hurt the feelings of Muslims.

Israeli military forces killed over 60 Palestinians and wounded more than 2,700 more on Monday during anti-occupation protests near the fence separating Gaza from the occupied territories, at a time when Israeli and American officials were attending the inauguration of the new US embassy in Jerusalem al-Quds.

Rouhani said that the US government and Israel should be answerable to the killing of people and their provocative acts in the region and added, "Unfortunately, the US president has made miscalculations with respect to regional issues and thinks that through supporting the Zionist regime it can stifle the Palestinian nation’s resistance."

The Iranian president called on Muslim countries to condemn in unison the US and Israel, saying “such criminal acts have made the Palestinian nation more united than ever, and bring to light the true intentions of the United States.”

Rouhani condemned the massacre of the oppressed Palestinians by the Zionist regime on the 70th anniversary of the occupation of Palestine as a major and heartbreaking catastrophe and stressed that “the United Nations and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) should fulfill their duty to protect the oppressed Palestinians at this critical juncture.”

Erdogan, for his part, said Israel’s killings of Palestinians have been a result of the unwise actions of the US government and encouraged them to commit crimes.  

Muslim countries must in a united move express their disapproval of these crimes and pursue the rights of the Palestinian people in international circles, the Turkish president noted.

Erdogan also invited Rouhani to attend an emergency meeting of the OIC in Istanbul.

He stressed that "any peace plan that would fail to address the demands and concerns of the Palestinian people would only increase tensions in the region."

The inauguration ceremony for the American embassy coincided with the anniversary of the day Israel was created in 1948.

The relocation of the US embassy, which has so far drawn international condemnations, was carried out five months after US President Donald Trump recognized Jerusalem al-Quds as the “capital” of Israel, promising to move the US diplomatic mission from Tel Aviv to the city.

The 57-member OIC will hold an extraordinary summit in Istanbul on May 18 to discuss the recent Israeli violence against Palestinian protesters in the Gaza Strip.

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