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October 2, 2020 Special Dispatch No. 8953

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan: Jerusalem Was Built By The Ottomans; It Is Our City, A City From Us

October 2, 2020
Turkey | Special Dispatch No. 8953

On October 1, 2020, at the opening of the new legislative year of Turkish parliament, following a two-month break, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said in a speech broadcast on KararTV: "Jerusalem is our city; it is a city from us." He said: "The current physical appearance of the Old City, which is the heart of Jerusalem, with its water, its market, and its many buildings, were built by [Ottoman] Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent." Touching on the fighting over Jerusalem during WWI, he said: "It is possible to encounter the traces of Ottoman resistance in this city, which we were forced to abandon in tears during the First World War." He closed his discussion of the issue by saying: "We will follow until the end both the Palestinian cause, which is a bleeding wound on the global conscience, and the cause of Jerusalem."

To view the clip of Turkish President Erdoğan on MEMRI TV, click here or below.

There Are "Traces Of Ottoman Resistance" In Jerusalem, "Which We Were Forced To Abandon In Tears During The First World War"

Recep Tayyip Erdoğan: "The other crisis that our country and nation is following with precision is the cruelty with which Israel has treated the Palestinians and the indifferent practices that count as nothing the sanctity of Jerusalem. Here, I see benefit in especially underlining this point. For us, the Jerusalem issue is not an ordinary geopolitical problem. Before everything else, the current physical appearance of the Old City, which is the heart of Jerusalem, with its water, its market, and its many buildings, was built by [Ottoman] Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent. For centuries, our ancestors showed their reverence by holding the city in high esteem and making it flourish.

"It is possible to encounter the traces of Ottoman resistance in this city, which we were forced to abandon in tears during the First World War.

"Jerusalem Is Our City; It Is A City From Us"

"Jerusalem is our city; it is a city from us. The Al-Aqsa mosque and the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem, which was our first qibla [direction of prayer], are the symbolic mosques of our faith. This city also hosts sacred sites of Christianity and Judaism. Though the land of the people of Palestine, who have lived in Jerusalem and the region for thousands of years, has been occupied, and rights and law have been violated, we must take great care with this issue.

"We accept as an honor in the name of our country and our nation [the task of] giving voice on every platform to the oppressed people of Palestine, with whom we lived together for centuries. With this understanding, we will follow until the end both the Palestinian cause, which is a bleeding wound on the global conscience, and the cause of Jerusalem."

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