Saudi King Salman reassures Palestinians on East Jerusalem

Saudi Arabia's King Salman meets Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in Riyadh on Dec 20, 2017.
Saudi Arabia's King Salman meets Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in Riyadh on Dec 20, 2017.PHOTO: REUTERS

RIYADH (AFP) - Saudi King Salman on Wednesday (Dec 20) pledged the kingdom's support for East Jerusalem as the capital of a future Palestinian state during talks with President Mahmud Abbas.

The monarch stressed "the legitimate right of the Palestinian people in establishing their independent state with East Jerusalem as its capital," the SPA official news agency reported.

The visit comes after US President Donald Trump earlier this month recognised Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, sparking angry reactions by the Palestinians and Arabs.

On Monday, Abbas reiterated his opposition to any US role as broker between the two sides, saying "whoever allows the United States to return as a partner or mediator in the peace process is crazy".

Abbas has sent delegations to China and Russia to ask them to take a greater role in the peace process with Israel, an official said on Tuesday.