Naharnet

Nasrallah Urges Severing of Arab Ties with Israel, Calls for Mass Rally in Dahieh

Hizbullah chief Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah on Thursday slammed U.S. President Donald Trump's declaration on Jerusalem as a “new Balfour Declaration,” urging Arab states to sever “public and secret” ties with Israel.

“Trump's decision on Jerusalem is a new Balfour Declaration and we will soon hear Arab voices trying to downplay its importance,” Nasrallah warned in a televised address dedicated to commenting on the U.S. president's move.

“Israel does not care about what the Arab states, Europe, Russia or China would say, and it is only concerned with the U.S. stance,” Nasrallah added, noting that Trump's move would encourage Israel to further violate “international resolutions and conventions.”

“The Israelis were maybe building a limited number of settlements, but from now on we will witness an unrestricted construction process,” Hizbullah's chief lamented.

He warned that the holy sites in Jerusalem are “under an extreme danger.”

“Al-Aqsa Mosque is now in danger. Do not be surprised if one day we wake up to find al-Aqsa Mosque demolished,” Nasrallah cautioned.

He added: “The fate of the Palestinian cause is at stake. What would be left of the cause when you take Jerusalem out of it? Trump is saying that the Palestinian cause has ended and those who believe in negotiations must pay attention to his words.”

“All Palestinians agree that east Jerusalem should be the capital of their state and today the U.S. has rejected this although it is the guarantor of the agreements,” Nasrallah went on to say.

Calling for protesting and condemning Trump's decision at all levels and on social networking websites, Hizbullah's secretary-general called on Arab and Islamic states to “summon U.S. ambassadors to hand them official and public protest letters against Trump's decision.”

“The Americans are pragmatic and they work for their interests. Therefore, pressing them might be useful and effective,” Nasrallah suggested.

He also called for severing “public and secret” Arab ties with Israel and halting “the normalization steps that several Arab countries have started.”

“I call on the Arab League and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation to issue a binding resolution declaring Jerusalem as the eternal capital of the State of Palestine,” Nasrallah added.

He also called for “a new Palestinian uprising,” urging Arab and Muslim states to back such a move.

“We call on all Arab and Muslim governments and people in the Arab and Islamic worlds to put an end to internal wars and conflicts,” he added.

Turning to Lebanon, Nasrallah called for a “huge popular rally” on Monday in Beirut's southern suburbs to condemn what he called “a very dangerous American aggression.”

"I am calling on men, women, young and old, the southern suburbs, Beirut and all those who wish to join in from across Lebanon," Nasrallah said, also inviting residents of Lebanon's 12 Palestinian refugee camps.

“I salute the Palestinian people, especially those whom we will see in the streets and squares in the coming days. They are the first line of defense and we must all stand by them,” Hizbullah's chief added.

“We are a nation that has the ability to turn the threat into a chance and danger into an achievement. We can turn the scene into a victory for us and a defeat for our enemy,” Nasrallah went on to say.

Trump on Wednesday announced that his administration was recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, a move that was widely condemned as inflammatory.

Most of the international community does not recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital, insisting the issue can only be resolved through negotiations with the Palestinians.

Trump's move sparked threats of a new intifada by the Palestinians and fears of a fresh eruption of violence across the region, but the response of Arab nations has been relatively muted.


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