Israel has no sovereignty over holy sites: FM

[11-05-2022 11:33 AM]

Ammon News - Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates, Ayman Safadi, said that talks His Majesty King Abdullah's will hold in Washington will discuss bilateral ties, and will focus on many regional issues, foremost of which is the Palestinian issue.

Speaking to an interview with Al-Mamlaka local TV channel, Safadi said "The message is clear. The current situation cannot continue in the absence of any horizon for achieving a just and comprehensive peace, which Jordan always affirms that its only way is the two-state solution that embodies the independent, sovereign Palestinian state with occupied Jerusalem as its capital on the pre-June 1967 borders."

Safadi stressed that the current situation, where the political horizon is absent, is very dangerous, as Israeli measures on the ground undermine the two-state solution and all chances of achieving a comprehensive peace.

Safadi indicated that there will be a clear and frank dialogue with the US leaders on the necessity of activating efforts aimed at creating a real political horizon.

On the situation in Jerusalem, the foreign minister said that Jordan, since before the holy month of Ramadan, "worked intensively to prevent any provocative Israeli actions that would lead to the outbreak of the situation, and His Majesty the King led intense efforts for that, but we all saw what happened in the holy Ramadan of Israeli violations led to the outbreak of violence."

He added that "Jordanian efforts are now focusing on what is required in order not to repeat such violations, and thus maintain security and stability, and the right of worshipers to perform their religious rites freely in the holy sites in occupied Jerusalem."

Safadi emphasized that "there is no Israeli sovereignty over the holy sites. Jerusalem is an occupied Palestinian land. Israel, as an occupying power, does not have any sovereignty over the Al Haram Al Sharif/ the holy Al-Aqsa Mosque, which the entirety of its 144 dunums constitutes a place of worship exclusively for Muslims."

Safadi noted that "the Islamic Awqaf Department, affiliated with the Ministry of Awqaf, is the body that has the exclusive authority to manage all affairs of the Al Haram Al Sharif, and this is the existing historical and legal status quo."

Safadi said, "I recall that in 1930 the League of Nations, when the Shaw Committee was formed, affirmed that the holy Al-Aqsa Mosque / Al-Haram Al-Sharif in its entirety is a place of worship exclusively for Muslims. The Security Council Resolution (478) rejected Israel's annexation of East Jerusalem, and affirmed that Jerusalem is an occupied Palestinian land. The (2334) resolution confirmed this situation as well, and the historical Hashemite custodianship dating back to 1924, which was confirmed in the agreement concluded between His Majesty the King and His Excellency President Mahmoud Abbas, confirmed this."

"Our position is clear: there is no Israeli sovereignty over the holy sites. The Jordanian Awqaf Ministry is the only entity that manages it, and we reject any Israeli action aimed at changing the historical and legal status quo. We have said previously and are now saying that any attempt to change the historical and legal status quo in the Islamic and Christian holy sites is playing with fire and a provocation to the feelings of more than 1.2 billion Muslims, which is pushing the region towards more violence," Safadi emphasized.

"We want calm, and we want to move forward in a practical and clear way towards peace. And calm begins with respecting the historical and legal status quo in the holy sites, and also begins with finding a political horizon," he said.

"The Ministry of Awqaf appoints the guards at the Al haram Al Sharif in coordination with the Awqaf Department. No one has anything to do with this appointment, but there is the reality of Israel, the occupying power, which obstructs all or many of the steps taken by the Awqaf Department in order to maintain security and tranquility in the Al Haram Al Sharif that include preventing Awqaf employees from carrying out their role, as well as impeding many reconstruction projects," Safadi said in the interview.

"The message is clear and the position is clear. Israel has no sovereignty over the holy sites. The occupied Jerusalem is the capital of the Palestinian state, which must be embodied as a free and independent, on the pre-June 4, 1967 borders, as a way to achieve a comprehensive and just peace," the foreign minister concluded.

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