Pope urges Trump to respect Jerusalem’s status

Pope Francis has urged U.S. President Donald Trump to respect Jerusalem's status ahead of his expected announcement to recognize the city as Israel's capital on Wednesday.

Speaking during a weekly address in Vatican, the Pope said: "I cannot keep silent on my deep concern for the situation that has been created in the past days."

The Pope has described Jerusalem as "a unique city, sacred to Jews, Christians, and Muslims".

"I would like to make a heartfelt appeal for everyone's commitment to respect the city's status, in conformity with the pertinent United Nations Resolutions," he said, as quoted by the Vatican Radio, an official broadcaster.

"I pray that wisdom and prudence prevail," he added.

Trump is expected to formally recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital on Wednesday and begin preparations to move the U.S. Embassy to the city, three senior administration officials confirmed to Anadolu Agency, late Tuesday.

Palestinians, Arab and Muslim countries warn that a unilateral recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital would "unleash widespread public anger" and deal a death knee to the peace process.

During his election campaign last year, Trump repeatedly promised to move the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

Jerusalem remains at the core of the Israel-Palestine conflict, with Palestinians hoping that East Jerusalem -- currently occupied by Israel -- might eventually serve as the capital of a future Palestinian state.

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