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Erdogan warns that Turkey 'will not allow' Israel to annex West Bank

Erdogan has been positioning Turkey as Palestine's most vocal backer among Muslim countries [Getty]

Date of publication: 26 May, 2020

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'We will not allow the Palestinian lands to be offered to anyone else' said the Turkish leader in an Eid address focused on Israel's planned annexation of the West Bank.
Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan warned in his Eid al-Fitr address that his country would not allow Israel's new government go ahead with its planned annexation of West Bank territory.

"We are witnessing a new plan of occupation and annexation by Israel that threatens Palestinian sovereignty and is contrary to international law," Erdogan said in a video addressing US Muslims on Sunday evening.

"We will not allow the Palestinian lands to be offered to anyone else."

He claimed Turkey is the "only voice" defending the Palestinians.

"The world order has let down the Palestinians, and has not successfully brought peace, justice, security and order to this part of the world," he added.

Erdogan added that Jerusalem and Temple Mount - the ruins of the ancient Jewish temple on which al-Aqsa mosque is situated - are "holy to three religions" and are "a red line for all Muslims in the world".

The Turkish leader went on to address the suffering of the Syrian people, Haftar's "putschist" forces in Libya, and Islamophobia against Muslims in the West.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has reiterated his plans to begin annexing settlements and the Jordan Valley in July, following the formation of the country's unity government - which he will lead for 18 months.

The annexation project has been harshly condemned by an increasing number of countries, including neighbouring states such as Jordan and European nations including France and Germany.

At his first cabinet meeting on Monday, Netanyahu reaffirmed his commitment to the July date outlined in the coalition agreement for taking the first step towards extending sovereignty to West Bank areas.

Indepth: Will the Palestinian Authority really cut ties with Israel?

The move will be carried out in coordination with the US, as stipulated by President Trump's peace plan for Israel-Palestine, which gave Israel the green light to illegally impose sovereignty on around 30 percent of the West Bank.

The peace plan in its entirety was rejected by the Palestinians, who have long demanded the West Bank as the territory of its future state, with East Jerusalem as its capital.

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