Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Middle East 'Ready to Blow' as Trump Claims Jerusalem Is Capital of Israel

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Middle East 'Ready to Blow' as Trump Claims Jerusalem Is Capital of Israel

Article excerpt

Byline: Nicholas Cecil Deputy Political Editor and Pippa Crerar in Islamabad

FEARS of spiralling violence in the Middle East grew today as the militant Palestinian group Hamas called for a new uprising over Donald Trump's move to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

Israel sent hundreds more soldiers into the occupied West Bank as schools and shops closed ahead of planned |protests by Palestinians against the US president's decision. The Foreign Office warned Britons to avoid demonstrations in Jerusalem and on the West Bank which could lead to clashes as: Turkish prime minister Binali Yildirim claimed Mr Trump had "pulled the pin on a bomb ready to blow in the region".

White House officials admitted that the move could "derail" the Middle East peace process, at least temporarily.

Britain and seven other countries called for an emergency meeting of the United Nations Security Council to discuss Mr Trump's decision, which has sparked global outrage.

Israeli premier Benjamin Netanyahu claimed many countries would follow the US in recognising the disputed city of Jerusalem as Israel's capital.

London Mayor Sadiq Khan, on a visit to Pakistan, condemned the decision as hampering the peace process.

Concerns grew about Mr Trump after he slurred part of his speech about Jerusalem yesterday, which the White House put down to a dry throat.

As world leaders lined up to condemn the US president, Ismail Haniyeh, leader of Islamist group Hamas, demanded a new intifada (uprising) to oppose Mr Trump's proposal which would eventually see the US embassy moving from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

"We should call for, and we should work on launching an intifada in the face of the Zionist enemy," he said in a speech in Gaza. Israeli military chiefs were deploying several battalions to the West Bank, and putting other forces on standby as part of "readiness for possible developments". …

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