Jerusalem is “a red line for all Muslims in the world,” Erdogan said.
By Josh Plank, World Israel News
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan told U.S. Muslims that he will not allow Israeli annexation of “Palestinian lands” during a video message on Sunday.
“Last week we have witnessed that a new occupation and annexation project, which disregards Palestine’s sovereignty and the international law, was put into action by Israel. We will not allow the Palestinian lands to be offered to anyone else,” Erdogan said.
“I would like to reiterate that Al-Quds Al-Sharif [Jerusalem], the holy site of three religions and our first kiblah, is a red line for all Muslims in the world,” he said.
The “kiblah” is the direction Muslims face during prayer. While Muhammad and his followers first prayed in the direction of Jerusalem as Jews do, it is said that Muhammad later received a revelation designating Mecca, Saudi Arabia, as the correct direction for Muslim prayer.
Erdogan addressed his comments to U.S. Muslims as part of an Eid al-Fitr message marking the end of the Muslim month of Ramadan.
“Blood and tears have, unfortunately, continued to shed in the holy Ramadan month as well across the Islamic world. Our brothers and sisters, living in Western countries, suffer from new attacks of Islamophobic and racist nature nearly every day,” he said.
This is not the first time the Turkish president has referred to Jerusalem as a red line, although what Turkey intends to do if Israel crosses this red line is not entirely clear.
At a press conference on February 6, Presidential Spokesperson Ibrahim Kalin said, “As President Erdogan has said repeatedly, Al-Quds is our red line. Metamorphosing Al-Quds’ historical and religious identity or any such steps are unacceptable historically, socially, religiously, conscientiously, and politically.”
Erdogan told members of his Justice and Development Party on January 31, “No amount of blood or property is enough to satisfy oppressors. Likewise, Israel has an insatiable appetite. Lastly, it is working, with the U.S. administration’s support, to put into action a plan which amounts to annexation of both Al-Quds and the lands under occupation coveted by Israel.”
“As Turkey, we will never accept this plan, which in appearance foresees a two-state solution but in fact erases Palestine and usurps Al-Quds,” he said.