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Foreign Office issues warning on Jerusalem protests


The Foreign Office has issued new advice for travellers to Jerusalem and the Occupied Palestinian Territories.

The move came hours after US President Donald Trump said that the US would now recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital  – sparking protests in the region.

“The Foreign and Commonwealth Office advise against all travel to the Old City of Jerusalem from 6pm (local time) on Thursday December 7 until 6am on Saturday December 9, 2017," said the FCO.

“Following President Trump's announcement recognising Jerusalem as Israel's capital on  December 6, Palestinian factions have called for mass protests across the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, on December 7 and 8; the security situation could quickly deteriorate, particularly around the Old City of Jerusalem.

“You should avoid all demonstrations across the West Bank and follow the advice of local police authorities.”

Trump's move made during a statement at the White House in Washingto DC has been condemned by other countries in the region as well as Palestinian groups.

But Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said of Trump’s announcement: “We're profoundly grateful for the president for his courageous and just decision to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and to prepare for the opening of the US embassy here.”

The FCO has also issued advice for other countries in the Middle East and North Africa following Trump's announcement, including the United Arab Emirates, Iran, Bahrain and Oman.

"There may be protests and demonstrations in some Middle Eastern and North African countries following a major US announcement on the status of Jerusalem; you should avoid any demonstrations and follow instructions of the local police authorities."



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