United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has already managed to upset members of the Palestine Liberation Organization and the Palestinian Authority with his alleged “bias” over Jerusalem.
PLO executive committee member Ahmad Majdalani complained to media Sunday that the UN Secretary-General has shown the international body is “untrustworthy” as a body that should support occupied peoples.
Majdalani’s contention came in response to remarks by Gutteres during an interview Friday on Israel Radio. The UN Secretary-General said it’s “completely clear that the Temple destroyed by the Romans in Jerusalem was a Jewish temple.” He added that there is no doubt that the city of Jerusalem is holy to all three of the major monotheistic faiths.
Moreover, Gutteres said he has no intention of pushing for a peace process between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, although he did say that he “believes in the two-states solution” and would help the parties reach that goal – if he were asked.
Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely praised the UN secretary-general, for “standing up for the historical truth regarding the Temple Mount and the historical connection of the Jewish people to Jerusalem,” she said in a statement. “You cannot cut off a 3,000-year-deep connection between the people of Israel, and Jerusalem.”
Palestinian Authority Jerusalem Affairs Minister Adnan al-Husseini responded in a statement to the Xinhua news agency, saying Gutteres had “ignored UNESCO’s decision that considered the Al Aqsa Mosque to be of pure Islamic heritage.” He added that the UN secretary-general had “violated all legal, diplomatic and humanitarian customs, and had overstepped his role as UN secretary-general.”
Al-Husseini insisted Gutteres “must issue an apology to the Palestinian people.”