Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas withdrew his top representative to the United States on Tuesday, 15 May, announced the foreign ministry, a day after the US moved its Israeli embassy to Jerusalem.

Husam Zomlot, the head of the Palestine Liberation Organization’s office in Washington, would return to the Palestinian territories Wednesday. It did not say how long Zomlot, the most senior Palestinian official in Washington, would be withdrawn for.

They consider the eastern part of Jerusalem their capital and countries have long kept their embassies in Tel Aviv, saying the future of the holy city was an issue to be negotiated between the Israelis and Palestinians.

The date of 14 May’s embassy opening also angered Palestinians, coming the day before they commemorate their mass displacement in the 1948 war surrounding the creation of Israel.

The event was overshadowed by mass protests along the Gaza border in which Israeli fire killed 60 Palestinians.The foreign ministry statement did not refer to the deaths, only the embassy move.

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