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Israel's al-Aqsa provocations will damage relations, warns Jordan

Jordan#s King warned Israel against Aqsa provocations during a meeting with the UK's Cameron [AFP]

Date of publication: 15 September, 2015

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Jordan's king has denounced Israel's latest assault on al-Aqsa mosque, Islam's third holiest site in East Jerusalem, saying continued Israeli incursions would affect relations.

On Monday, King Abdullah II of Jordan said that Jordanian-Israeli ties will be affected if the ongoing Israeli provocations at al-Aqsa Mosque continue.

During a joint press conference with UK Prime Minister David Cameron, the king said: "I would like to state, in your presence that if this continues to happen, actually as of today, any more provocations in Jerusalem will affect the relationship between Jordan and Israel; and Jordan will have no choice, but to take action, unfortunately."

The king, whose country signed a peace treaty with Israel in 1994, did not specify what measures he would take to confront Israeli provocations.

In the past, Jordan recalled its ambassador in Tel Aviv following similar incidents, but it never threatened to reconsider the peace treaty, a widely popular demand in Jordan.

The king also told the British prime minister: "We in Jordan have been very concerned and angered with the recent escalations in Jerusalem, specifically in al-Aqsa Mosque."

The king also recalled Israel's broken promises in this regard, saying: "We have gotten reassurances from the Israeli government that this would not happen. Unfortunately, these are reassurances we have heard in the past."

The holy sites in Jerusalem are under the custodianship of the Kingdom of Jordan under the peace treaty with Israel.

An agreement signed between the king and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in April 2013 also reaffirms Jordan's role in safeguarding the holy cites in the city.

Meanwhile, the head of Hamas' political bureau called Abbas on Tuesday to discuss the Israeli assault on al-Aqsa mosque.

According to a Hamas statement, the conversation focused on the need to confront the attacks on the holy site by closing ranks and expediting reconciliation, including by implementing previous agreements.

Meshaal stressed to Abbas the need to convene an urgent meeting of the Interim Leadership Framework of the PLO that would include all factions, to hold consultations and unify positions, and agree a joint national strategy to counter plans against al-Aqsa, speed up reconciliation, and end Palestinian division​.

Separately, Abbas called for an emergency Islamic summit to be held to tackle the violations.

The Palestinian Authority released a statement that called on the Islamic and Arab worlds to hold a summit to support occupied Jerusalem and preserve its Arab identity and religious heritage.

The statement asked for Islamic world to back all Palestinians on Palestinian territories who are facing the worse attacks from settlers, which it said should be classified as “war crimes” and “crimes against humanity”.

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