Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozdag told reporters yesterday that his country’s position towards Jerusalem had not changed, warning that if the US declared Jerusalem as the capital of Israel the situation would be catastrophic, the Anadolu Agency reported.
Speaking to reporters after a cabinet meeting, Bozdag said Jerusalem’s status had been determined by international agreements.
“The status of Jerusalem and Al-Aqsa Mosque have been determined by international agreements. It is important to preserve Jerusalem’s status for the sake of protecting peace in the region,” he said, adding, “if another step is taken and this step is lifted, this will be a major catastrophe.”
President Tayyip Erdogan said today that Turkey could go as far as breaking off diplomatic ties with Israel if the United States formally recognises Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, a move he said would be a “red line” for Muslims.
Anadolu also reported the Turkish Presidential spokesman, Ibrahim Kalin, calling on the US administration to refrain from recognising Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
On Twitter Kalin said: “We are extremely concerned about reports that the US is preparing to declare Jerusalem as capital of Israel. This would be a fatal mistake and go against international agreements, UN resolutions and historical facts.”
“Such a move would undermine all peace efforts and trigger new tensions and conflicts. We hope the US administration will avoid this mistake.”