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Erdogan says US debates over Jerusalem embassy move 'wrong'

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Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan / AFP PHOTO / ADEM ALTAN

US President Donald Trump had promised during his campaign to move the American embassy to Jerusalem, whose status is one of the thorniest issues of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Speaking at a forum in Istanbul, Erdogan said everyone should be careful on issues that concerned the status of Jerusalem, warning that even “relocating a stone” in the city could have serious implications.

“The debates over the possibility of US moving its Israel embassy to Jerusalem are extremely wrong and should certainly drop from the agenda,” the Turkish president said.

Israel occupied the West Bank and east Jerusalem in 1967. It later annexed east Jerusalem in a move never recognised by the international community.

In 1980, Israel declared “reunited” Jerusalem its capital.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu supports the US moving its embassy.

Erdogan, a fervent supporter of Palestinians, made peace with Israel in June last year after bilateral ties deteriorated over the 2010 Israeli raid on a Gaza-bound aid ship that killed 10 Turkish activists.

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