Turkish president says he hopes the world will “give a very good lesson to the United States,” at UNGA.
ISTANBUL – Turkey told US President Donald Trump on Thursday he could not buy its support in a United Nations vote on Jerusalem, and said the world should teach the United States a “very good lesson” by resisting US pressure.
Trump has threatened to cut aid to countries that support a draft UN resolution calling for the United States to withdraw its decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.
Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said in Ankara UN member states should not let their decision in Thursday’s vote at the UN General Assembly be dictated by money.
“Mr. Trump, you cannot buy Turkey’s democratic will with your dollars,” he said. “The dollars will come back, but your will won’t once it’s sold. That is why your stance is important.”
Trump’s announcement two weeks ago that he was recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital broke with decades of US policy and international consensus that the city’s status must be left to Israeli-Palestinian talks.
Last week, Erdogan hosted a special meeting of the Organization for Islamic Cooperation, which condemned Trump’s decision and called on the world to respond by recognizing East Jerusalem as the capital of Palestine.
Jerusalem, revered by Jews, Christians and Muslims alike, has been at the heart of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict for decades. Israel captured Arab East Jerusalem in 1967 and later annexed it in an action not recognized internationally.
Trump’s Jerusalem move led to harsh criticisms from Muslim countries and Israel’s closest European allies, who have also rejected the move.
A draft resolution calling for withdrawal of Trump’s decision was vetoed at the United Nations Security Council by the United States on Monday. Following that vote,