Russian Foreign Ministry 'Alarmed' by Trump's Recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's Capital

Inside Gaza, thousands of Palestinians rallied, some chanting: "Death to America!" The statement also issued restrictions on U.S. government employees' personal and official travel for certain areas of Israel.

Jerusalem's status has been contested for a millennia, its Old City home to religious sites of Muslims, Christians and Jews.

"Three in 10 white evangelical Protestants are strong Trump supporters, while 42 percent are weak Trump supporters" and another 13 percent are strong Trump opponents, according to the Public Religion Research Institute survey, "One Nation, Divided, Under Trump", published Tuesday.

Israel considers Jerusalem its eternal and indivisible capital.

The Christian leaders, who include Catholic and Orthodox patriarchs as well as the Franciscan Custos of the Holy Land, said Jerusalem could be "shared and fully enjoyed" once a political process helped "liberate the hearts of all people that live within it from the conditions of conflict and destructiveness that they are experiencing".

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who hailed Trump's announcement as a "historic landmark", said on Thursday many countries would follow the U.S. move and contacts were underway.

Still, we'd be delighted to eat these words.

Jerusalem, he went on, is the heart of Israel's successful democracy - the location of the Knesset, the Supreme Court, the Prime Minister's Office and the President's Residence, he further stressed.

"We ask you, Mr. President, to help us all walk toward more love and a definitive peace, which cannot be reached without Jerusalem being for all", they said Dec. 6.

The EU's foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said: "The European Union has a clear and united position".

"The Palestinians need a state that is contiguous and cohesive, and that allows them to prosper - but any agreement with the Palestinian people must preserve Israel's identity as a Jewish state, with secure, recognised and defensible borders". The same back and forth continued for hours, amid the burning grey haze of tear gas. And it is highly unlikely to bring Abbas running to the negotiating table.

At least eight of the 15 members of the Security Council, including Britain and France -- the two permanent members which closely align themselves on most of the global issues asked for the special meeting of the top decision-making wing of the UN.

Haniyeh called on Western-backed Abbas to withdraw from peacemaking with Israel and on Arabs to boycott the Trump administration.

French President Emmanuel Macron branded the decision from Trump as "regrettable" and called for efforts to "avoid violence at all costs".

The presidential visit, they said, implied recognition of Israeli sovereignty at the site.

His decision on Jerusalem fulfils a campaign promise and will please Republican conservatives and evangelicals who make up a sizeable portion of his base of support.

Major US allies came out against Mr Trump's reversal of decades of US and broad international policy on Jerusalem.

"There will of course be disagreement and dissent regarding this announcement but we are confident that ultimately, as we work through these disagreements, we will arrive at a place of greater understanding and co-operation", Trump said.

But Palestinian leaders warned that the step would hinder the peace process.

Taliban insurgents in Afghanistan said the United States was "exposing its colonial ambition in Muslim territory". In Bethlehem, troops used water cannons and tear gas to disperse protesting crowds.

  • Ricardo Clara