US embassy opens in Jerusalem as dozens of Palestinians killed
The United States officially opened its embassy to Israel in Jerusalem al-Quds on Monday, as Israeli forces killed dozen of Palestinian protesters.
"Today we open the United States embassy in Jerusalem, Israel," U.S. ambassador to Israel David Friedman said at the beginning of the inaugural ceremony, attended by a U.S. delegation from Washington and Israeli leaders including Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and US President's daughter Ivanka and son-in-law Jared Kushner.
U.S. President Donald Trump, in a recorded message at a ceremony claimed that he remained committed to peace between Israel and the Palestinians.
Meanwhile, Israeli troops have opened fire on Palestinians who have gathered near a Gaza fence for the climax of a six-week demonstration coinciding with the inauguration of US embassy in Jerusalem al-Quds.
The Palestine Liberation Organization called a general strike across the West Bank and Gaza on Tuesday in response to the deaths of Gazans killed by Israeli troops at a border protest.
The rallies known as the “Great March of Return” are due to climax on Tuesday, the 70th anniversary of Nakba Day (Day of Catastrophe) when Israel was created.
Every year on May 15, Palestinians all over the world hold demonstrations to commemorate the day, which marks the anniversary of the forcible Israeli eviction of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians from their homeland in 1948.
Iran's foreign minister is calling today's opening of the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem "a day of great shame."
Mohammad Javad Zarif on Monday wrote on Twitter: "Israeli regime massacres countless Palestinians in cold blood as they protest in the world's largest open air prison. Meanwhile, Trump celebrates move of U.S. illegal embassy and his Arab collaborators move to divert attention."
The Kremlin said on Monday it feared the opening of a U.S. embassy in Jerusalem would increase tensions in the Middle East.
Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri calls the U.S. decision to move its embassy to Jerusalem a "provocative" act that closes the doors for any attempts to reach peace between the Israel and Palestinians.
UK Prime Minister Theresa May said on Monday, Britain has no plans to move its Israel embassy from Tel Aviv toJerusalem and still disagrees with the U.S. decision to do so.
Turkey's President Tayyip Erdogan said on Monday the United States had forfeited its role as a mediator in the Middle East by moving its Israel embassy toJerusalem.
The Arab League will hold an extraordinary meeting to discuss the United State's "illegal" move of embassy to Jerusalem.