Abbas won't meet Pence as Palestinians seek new mediator

Abbas won't meet Pence as Palestinians seek new mediator

Trump said his defiant move - making good on a 2016 presidential campaign pledge - marked the start of a "new approach" to solving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

A day after US President Donald Trump's groundbreaking speech recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, senior Palestinian official Jibril Rajoub said Vice President Mike Pence is "unwelcome in Palestine".

"The United States has crossed all the red lines with the Jerusalem decision", the aide said.

The White House warned on Thursday that cancelling a planned meeting between Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas and United States vice president Mike Pence in the wake of Washington's policy shift on Jerusalem would be "counterproductive".

On Friday, Ahmed al-Tayeb who heads Al-Azhar, Egypt's top Sunni Muslim institution, also scrapped plans to meet Pence over the "unjust and unfair American decision on Jerusalem".

White House officials could not immediately be reached for comment and State Department officials did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

"There will be no meeting with the vice-president of America in Palestine", Abbas's diplomatic adviser Majdi Al Khaldi said.

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The Arab League's spokesman Mahmoud Afify said on Saturday that the Arab League (AL) called on the US administration to reverse its decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

In the West Bank city of Bethlehem, hundreds of Palestinians took to the streets of Bethlehem on Saturday morning.

However, Palestinian protests on Saturday were less intense than on the previous two days.

Hamas, which controls Gaza, confirmed the two men killed in the pre-dawn strikes belonged to the group, which has urged Palestinians to keep up the confrontation with Israeli forces.

In East Jerusalem about 60 people demonstrated near the walled Old City, where paramilitary border police and officers on horseback tried to disperse the crowd with tear gas.

The Hamas movement declared Friday a "day of rage".

A Palestinian woman was wounded by Israeli army fire during clashes at the border following one funeral attended by thousands in the Gaza Strip city of Khan Younis.

As previously reported by JOL, the White House made it clear that recognizing Jerusalem does not signify giving up on the peace process.

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