Egypt’s Pope Tawadros II cancels meeting with US vice president over Trump’s Jerusalem decision

Ahram Online , Saturday 9 Dec 2017

File Photo: Pope Tawadros II, the pope of the Coptic Orthodox church (Photo: Reuters)

Egypt's Pope Tawadros II, the head of the Coptic Orthodox Church, has cancelled a meeting with US Vice President Mike Pence over last week's decision by US President Donald Trump to recognise Jerusalem as the capital to Israel, Al-Ahram Arabic news website reported on Saturday.

"Considering the decision taken by the US administration concerning the city of Jerusalem at this inappropriate time with no consideration to the feelings of millions of Arabs, the Egyptian Coptic Orthodox Church declines to meet with Mr Mike Pence," said the Coptic Orthodox Church in a short statement.

The head of Al-Azhar’s Sheikh Ahmed El-Tayeb also announced the cancellation of a meeting with the US Vice president, who is expected to visit Egypt later this month.

On Wednesday, President Trump declared that the US would formally recognise the city of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, breaking with a decades-old US policy that the status of the city must be determined in negotiations with the Palestinians, who seek to establish an independent state with East Jerusalem as its capital.

The decision has sparked anger in Palestinian territories and Arab countries, and has been met with condemnation from countries around the world.

Egypt has officially condemned the decision, maintaining its official stance supporting the two-state solution with East Jerusalem as the Palestinian capital.

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