Thursday, 26 May 2022
WorldThe Russia-Ukraine war, and tensions in Jerusalem at the heart of the...

The Russia-Ukraine war, and tensions in Jerusalem at the heart of the meeting between the Turkish president and the UN SG

AA / Istanbul / Sefa Mutlu

In a telephone conversation held on Sunday, the Turkish president and the UN secretary-general discussed the ongoing war between Russia and Ukraine and the recent tensions in Jerusalem.

“We had a telephone conversation with the UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres. During our conversation, we discussed regional developments, including the incident in Jerusalem and the war between Ukraine and Russia,” Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Twitter.

President Erdogan also said he underlined the importance of the Istanbul process for the peace talks between Russia and Ukraine and efforts to settle disagreements between the parties.

At least 1,982 civilians have been killed and 2,651 others have been injured in Ukraine since the war began on February 24, according to UN estimates, but the true toll is believed to be much higher.

According to the UN refugee agency, more than 4.8 million Ukrainians have fled to other countries and more than 7 million have been internally displaced.

The pair also addressed recent tensions in Jerusalem, with Erdogan telling António Guterres that Ankara strongly condemns Israeli attacks on worshipers at Al-Aqsa Mosque, saying they are “unacceptable”.

They also took stock of joint measures that can be taken to achieve peace in the region.

The Palestinian territories have been experiencing growing tension since Israeli forces invaded the courtyard of Al-Aqsa Mosque on Friday following clashes with worshipers, injuring hundreds.

On Sunday, more than 700 Israeli settlers forced their way into the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound, under heavy police protection, to celebrate the week-long Passover, which began on Friday.

The Al-Aqsa Mosque is the third holiest site in the world for Muslims. Jews call this area the “Temple Mount”, claiming that it was the site of two Jewish temples in ancient times.

Israel occupied East Jerusalem, where the Al-Aqsa Mosque is located, during the 1967 Arab-Israeli war. It annexed the entire city in 1980, a move that was never recognized by the international community.

*Translated from English by Mourad Belhaj

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