Leaders of the Muslim world reiterated their condemnation of the United States, in response to President Donald Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, and called on the international community to respond by recognizing the state of Palestine with Jerusalem as its capital. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who hosted the summit of more than 50 Muslim countries, emphasized to his Islamist counterparts that Washington had effectively forfeited its role as a mediator in international efforts to bring an end to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. President Erdogan also took the opportunity to call on countries around the world to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Palestine. President Erdogan said, “Once again, I want to make a historic call. I call on all countries that have not yet recognized the state of Palestine to do so immediately. Today we declared that we recognize Jerusalem as Palestine’s capital. From now on, the capital of the state of Palestine will be Jerusalem in our eyes, and it will remain that way,” he said.
Among the Muslim leaders that attended the summit of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, the leader of Israel’s arch enemy, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani asserted that his country was ready to mend its difference with other Muslim countries and cooperate “without any precondition ” to assist the Palestinian cause by militarily confronting the state of Israel. The declaration by Iran, the leading Shi’ite Muslim power, was directed toward the leader of the Sunni Muslim World, Saudi Arabia, seeking to mend differences in an ongoing rivalry for regional dominance, as both countries are engaged in a proxy-war, supporting rival groups in Yemen, Syria, Iraq and Lebanon. While Tehran and Riyadh see each other as the paramount threat to regional peace and stability, Iran urged its Muslim enemies to resolve their difference through dialogue and join forces in confronting what it sees as their common enemy, the state of Israel.