Arabs launch $1 billion fund to keep Jerusalem among MuslimsBy Mason White 10:35 AM March 29, 2013
|The Arab League Summit in Qatar|
By: Ryan Lee Hall
A new fund was launched this week in order to help keep Jerusalem among the Muslims, according to press reports in New York.
The Emir of Qatar proposed this that the Arab League establish a fund of $1 billion in order to protect the Arab and Islamic heritage of Jerusalem, as the disputed holy city remains one of the most difficult problems to solve in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
The emir, Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani, said he will contribute $250 million to the fund.
He also proposed a special meeting as soon as possible, to promote Palestinian reconciliation between the Fatah and Hamas political factions and the formation of a new Palestinian caretaker government.
His proposals were made during a two-day Arab League summit in Doha, Qatar.
In an opening address to the summit, the emir said that the Arab and Islamic heritage of Jerusalem, which the Arabs call Al-Quds, is under threat because Israel claims the entire city as its capital. The Palestinians have said that Jerusalem should be the capital of a future Palestinian state.
“There will be no peace before finding a just, permanent and comprehensive solution to meet all the legitimate rights of the Palestinians, mainly through the establishment of an independent State with Al-Quds as its capital,” Amir said.
A spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Israel criticized the proposal of the emir, accusing him of trying to deny the Jewish heritage of Jerusalem.
“There is no history without history of Jewish Jerusalem,” the spokesperson, Yigal Palmor, said. “Depriving the Jewish fundamentals of Jerusalem would be like depriving the Islamic fundamentals of Mecca,” he added.
Meanwhile in Israel, the proposal brought out a mixed response.
“I am very happy to hear that something will finally be done to preserve the Muslim heritage of Jerusalem,” Mohamed Saleem, an Israeli Arab resident of Jerusalem told YourJewishNews.com.
“Jerusalem has always been the capital of the Jewish state,” Yaakov Fischmann, a Jewish Israeli resident of Jerusalem told YourJewishNews.com.