Ramallah- Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said on Tuesday that any attempt to move the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem is considered more than a provocation and will therefore lead to a Palestinian-Arab response.
Abbas hinted to reverse the recognition of Israel as a prelude to other escalatory steps. However, Abbas alluded he might accept that Trump moves the embassy only after receiving guarantees that east Jerusalem would be the capital of the Palestinian State.
At a meeting of the Palestinian cabinet, Abbas said: “We recognize our borders based on the 1967 lines, including east Jerusalem as the capital of Palestine… Moving the embassy is not only a provocation, but in fact is more than a provocation and will harm the entire peace process.”
Abbas has written a letter to U.S. president-elect Donald Trump telling him not to move the embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
On Tuesday, Abbas also said he hoped Trump would stop the move and start negotiations on the basis of the decisions of international institutions and Resolution 2334 of the U.N. Security Council and the Paris conference.
The Palestinian president also said Trump should not move the U.S. mission “because Jerusalem from the perspective of Israel is a united city, and this is not true and is not valid, and therefore moving the embassy would thwart any future progress and will harm the peace process.”
Trump is not the first U.S. president to pledge moving the embassy to Jerusalem, as the same promises were made at least 20 times during past presidential terms. However, no U.S. president has executed the move. This time, the Palestinians are fearing a practical step after several businessmen close to Trump informed Abbas that the incoming president was serious in his decision.
Last week, Abbas appealed to Russian President Vladimir Putin and asked him to directly intervene in order to stop Trump from moving the embassy to Jerusalem.
Palestinians are now dependent on the states that have signed the Paris statement to exert pressure on the U.S. and Israel to launch talks based on the two-state solution.