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Turkish PM urges Trump to reconsider his plan to move U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem

All Headlines 15:16 December 06, 2017

SEOUL, Dec. 6 (Yonhap) -- Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim urged U.S. President Donald Trump on Wednesday to reconsider his plan to move the U.S. Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem from Tel Aviv, saying the relocation would inflame tensions between Israel and Palestine.

"In the Middle East, Jerusalem is a region with very sensitive issues. President Trump made such remarks and I think this is an issue that should be reconsidered," Yildirim said through an interpreter during a joint news conference in Seoul following talks with South Korean Prime Minister Lee Nak-yon.

"In my opinion, such a decision to move the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem could cause a conflict between Israel and Palestine again and develop further into a conflict between religions," he said. "Jerusalem is a very important city for Islam as well, and our government hopes this issue won't be escalated."

U.S. media have reported that Trump is about to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital and instruct the State Department to begin the multi-year process of moving the American embassy from Tel Aviv to the holy city. Trump will reportedly unveil his decision in a key speech set for Wednesday.

Media reports have said the decision, if made, could trigger unrest across the Middle East.

"As a wrong step could cause a big conflict in the international community in the future, we have to take action to stop this," Yildirim said, adding that Turkey has backed Palestine and will continue to do so in the future.

jschang@yna.co.kr
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