By Handan Kazanci
ISTANBUL (AA) – Turkey’s president on Sunday reiterated his country's support for Palestine as the Muslim world celebrates Eid al-Fitr, the holiday marking the end of the holy month of Ramadan.
"We will not allow the Palestinian lands to be offered to anyone else," Recep Tayyip Erdogan said in a video message on Twitter addressed to US Muslims.
"I would like to reiterate that al-Quds Al-Sharif, the holy site of three religions and our first kiblah, is a red line for all Muslims worldwide," Erdogan said, referring to the Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem, also known by Jews as the Temple Mount, and home to the Christian Church of the Holy Sepulchre.
"It is clear that the global order has long failed to produce justice, peace, serenity and order," he said.
"Last week we witnessed that a new occupation and annexation project, which disregards Palestine’s sovereignty and international law, was put into action by Israel," he added.
Israel has said it will to annex parts of the West Bank on July 1, as agreed to between Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Benny Gantz, the head of the Blue and White party.
The plan has drawn outrage worldwide, and especially sharp condemnation in Turkey.
The West Bank, including East Jerusalem, is seen as occupied territory under international law, thus making all Jewish settlements there – as well as the planned annexation – illegal.
Turning to the holiday, Erdogan said: “I congratulate my American Muslim brothers and sisters’ Eid al-Fitr on behalf of the citizens of the Republic of Turkey.”
“I pray to my Lord that these holy days may herald an era of peace, safety, and serenity for American Muslims, the entire Islamic world, and humankind,” Erdogan said.
“The [coronavirus] pandemic has shown that there are no hierarchies or privileges among any region, nation or country in the world,” he added.
“It is only through global cooperation that the problems caused by diseases, various conflicts, wars, migration, racism, Islamophobia, terrorism, and poverty that threaten humankind can be overcome,” Erdogan said.
Since first appearing in China last December, the novel coronavirus has spread to at least 188 countries and regions.
The US, Russia, Brazil, and several European countries are currently the hardest hit in the world.
The pandemic has killed nearly 343,000 people worldwide, with more than 5.34 million confirmed cases, while recoveries numbering around 2.14 million, according to figures compiled by the US’ Johns Hopkins University.