Former Hamas chief Khaled Meshaal slams United States embassy move

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On Friday, A State Department official confirmed to The Jerusalem Post that the Trump administration will officially relocate the USA embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem in May, coinciding with Israel's 70th Independence Day.

Secretary General of the Arab League Ahmed Aboul Gheit said the United States decision to move its embassy to Jerusalem on the 70th anniversary of the "Palestinian exodus, the Nakba", is "likely going to undermine the last chance of peace and coexistence between the Israelis and the Palestinians".

According to Channel 10 and Hadashot news, a ribbon-cutting ceremony is being planned for mid-May. The embassy will be based in the current US consulate in Yerushalayim's Arnona neighborhood. We are excited about taking this historic step, and look forward with anticipation to the May opening'.

Spokesman Abdul-Latif al-Qanou said Hamas considers moving the United States embassy to Jerusalem "an intended negligence of our people and a new aggression on their rights and their holy sites".

There's no doubt that the government will turn the occasion into a giant event, even though in practice it merely means carving out office space for the ambassador and a small staff in the U.S. Consulate building in Jerusalem's Arnona neighborhood.

Mr Trump broke with decades of policy in December when he announced USA recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital and pledged to move the embassy.

Indeed, all supporters of Israel should be echoing those sentiments: Thank you, President Trump!

Trump's move, Khaldi said in an interview, "gave the Israelis a pretext to say that Jerusalem is unified under Israeli rule", contravenes global law and will impede peace efforts.

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"The time is now for all United Nations member-states to follow in the footsteps of the US and declare that they too recognize Jerusalem as the eternal capital of the State of Israel", the envoy added.

Israel annexed East Jerusalem along with the rest of the West Bank and Gaza Strip in the 1967 Middle East war.

Israel claims all of Jerusalem as its capital, while the Palestinians see the eastern sector as the capital of their future state.

The Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) immediately decried Washington's embassy announcement, calling it a "provocation to all Arabs".

Mr Trump said his recognition of Jerusalem, which made good on a 2016 campaign pledge, marked the start of a "new approach" to solving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. We will celebrate it together, all citizens of Israel.

Trump's December declaration recognizing Jerusalem as Israel's capital and announcing plans to relocate the embassy there was met with worldwide condemnation.

The fact that it will take place in May, "when Palestinians mark 70 years for their dispersal and uprooting from their homeland", is "offensive to the feelings of Arabs and Muslims, in addition to being a blatant violation of global law and United Nations resolutions", the Ministry said in a statement.

Dr. Robert Jeffress, the senior pastor of the First Baptist Church in Dallas, TX, told CBN News while visiting Jerusalem that Israel has every right to name its capital.

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