KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia on Thursday (Dec 7) said in a statement that the United States’ decision to recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital would have grave repercussions across the wider world.
On Wednesday, US President Donald Trump defied global opposition by recognising Jerusalem as the capital of Israel in an address from the White House.
In the speech, Trump said he had directed the State Department to make arrangements to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
“Malaysia is extremely concerned that the United States has announced its decision to recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital,” said Malaysia's foreign ministry in a statement.
“Such a decision would put to an end all efforts made towards a resolution of Palestinian question. It would have grave repercussions not only towards the security and stability of the region, but would inflame sentiments, making efforts to combat terrorism all the more difficult.”
Malaysia also said it reaffirms that Jerusalem is at the core of the Palestinian cause and requests all member states of the United Nations not to recognise any changes in the pre-1967 borders, including in connection with Jerusalem.
“Any attempts to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, establishing or transferring any diplomatic mission to the city, are considered aggression not only against the Arab and Islamic Ummah, but are also infringements on the rights of Muslims and Christians alike.”
The statement added: “It is also an infringement on the Palestinian people’s national rights including their right to self-determination, and a grave breach of the international law along with the Security Council’s relevant resolutions: Namely Resolutions No. 252 (1968), 267 (1969), 465, 476 and 478 (1980), including the recent Resolution 2334 (2016).
“Recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel is not a recognition of the reality on the ground; it is an expression of support for Israeli policies, much of which is in contravention of the international law. It is a miscarriage of justice.
“For these reasons, Malaysia urges the United States to reconsider its decision.”
"WE VEHEMENTLY REJECT" JERUSALEM SUGGESTION: PM NAJIB
In his speech at the United Malays National Organisation (UMNO) general assembly on Thursday, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak slammed Trump's decision to recognise Jerusalem as Israel's capital and urged party delegates to stand in protest and solidarity.
"I invite the party leadership, delegates, members in attendance, both in here and out there, as well as everyone no matter where you are to stand up and make our stand clear so that the world hears Malaysian Muslims voices echo when we vehemently reject any suggestion for Jerusalem to be Israel's capital for all time," Najib said.
Meanwhile, Palestine's Ambassador to Malaysia Anwar Al Agha expressed appreciation at Najib's statement.
"We are still hopeful that all brotherly countries ... like Malaysia will stand firmly with the Palestinian people, with the Palestinian cause," he said.
"And we would like to thank PM Najib Razak for his government's statement this morning and his words and strong support," he added.
Additional reporting by Sumisha Naidu