Published: Tue, May 15, 2018
Global News | By Stacy Ballard

Israel kills 52 in Gaza as US Embassy opens

Israel kills 52 in Gaza as US Embassy opens

Trump said the United States "remains fully committed to facilitating a lasting peace agreement (between Israel and the Palestinians) and we continue to support the status quo at Jerusalem's holy sites".

Palestinian areas in East Jerusalem and the West Bank remain tense after the slaughter in Gaza and after the embassy move.

"We condemn this massacre of civilian protesters - including children, medical personnel and the disabled - who seek to shake the conscience of an worldwide community that has long ignored or excused Israel's past dispossession of the Palestinian people, " said Nihad Awad, executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, who is of Palestinian heritage.

Israeli forces killed 55 Palestinians on the Gaza border in the conflict's bloodiest day in years on Monday as clashes and protests coincided with the deeply controversial opening of the United States embassy in Jerusalem. There was instant outrage; the move was termed as a setback to peace efforts.

There had already been weeks of protests and clashes along the Gaza border, with 97 Palestinians killed by Israeli fire there since March 30. "Today we open the United States embassy in Jerusalem, Israel", he said to applause.

"Now we're playing the role of arsonist", said Ilan Goldenberg, a former State Department and Pentagon official who runs the Mideast program at the Center for a New American Security. "Trump's administration is the biggest problem".

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The contentious move and the Israeli military's use of forces has drawn global condemnation.

In Washington, White House spokesman Raj Shah condemned Hamas over the deadly clash and defended Israel for its response.

Hamas denied instigating the violence.

The inauguration followed Trump's December 6 recognition of the disputed city as Israel's capital. "At the request of the Department of State, and in coordination with host nations, the Department of Defense has deployed additional Marine Security Guards to several US embassies for the objective of temporarily augmenting security", Pentagon spokeswoman Lt. Cmdr.

"The opening of the American embassy in occupied Jerusalem represents a step of utmost gravity which I do not think the USA administration realises its real consequences in both the short and long term", he added.

Abbas said he "will not accept" any peace deal proposed by the Trump administration.

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It's unclear exactly how long the additional security will be stationed in the region.

Thousands of Palestinians protest US's Jerusalem embassy move.

Int'l community (barring US) does not recognise Israel's claim. "What is the likelihood of that?".

Beyond the disputed nature of Jerusalem, the date of the embassy move was also key. They also count on the United States for their security. "Move your embassies to Jerusalem because it advances peace, and that's because you can't base peace on a foundation of lies". "Because when President Trump makes a promise, he keeps it", Ivanka said on Twitter. "The peace plan will be introduced at the appropriate time".

The White House was focused elsewhere.

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