View of a Palestinian refugee camp behind Israel's apartheid wall in east Jerusalem on 3 December 2014 [Muammar Awad/Apaimages]
Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad Malki has strongly condemned the US for tagging Palestinians living in occupied Jerusalem as “Arab residents”, a label which he said undermines Palestinians' native ties to the land of their forebears.
Malki said the United States is using classifications coined by the extremist Israeli right-wing government.
In Malki’s terms, such a label “disregards all international and United Nations reports issued by independent investigation and fact-finding committees, including the findings of the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court that Israel, its occupation army and its officials violate international law, and commit war crimes, targeting and killing Palestinian civilians deliberately.”
Malki expressed his strong rejection of all “attempts to falsify and deny the facts on the ground,” asserting that “the Palestinian people have been the owners of this land for tens of thousands of years, and that they are deeply rooted in historical Palestine. Therefore any attempt to label them as residents is unacceptable for they are the indigenous people of Palestine and Jerusalem”.
“The Israeli occupation has no right to claim sovereignty over the land that it occupies. The fact that the US is encouraging the occupation will not change the legal status of the occupied Palestinian land, including Jerusalem, and therefore the place of this report and the so-called deal of the century is the trash pin of history”, Malki was quoted by Wafa News Agency as further stating.