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Russian, Turkish foreign ministers urge conflicting parties in Jerusalem to show restraint

Sergey Lavrov and Mevlut Cavusoglu also emphasized the significance of ongoing efforts aimed at resolving the Nagorno-Karabakh crisis

MOSCOW, May 10. /TASS/. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and his Turkish counterpart Mevlut Cavusoglu in a phone call on Monday called on the parties to the conflict in East Jerusalem to show restraint and to avoid steps escalating tensions, the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Monday.

"The ministers condemned the eviction of Palestinians from their ancestral neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah and, in the spirit of the joint statement of special envoys of the Middle East Quartet of International Mediators of May 8, 2021, called on all the parties to the conflict to show restraint and avoid actions that threaten to further exacerbate the situation in the Islamic holy month of Ramadan," the statement said.

"The foreign ministers voiced serious concern about the escalation in Israeli-Palestinian relations and a dangerous surge in tensions in East Jerusalem, first and foremost outside the Al-Aqsa Mosque," the statement says.

Lavrov and Cavusoglu emphasized the significance of ongoing efforts aimed at resolving the Nagorno-Karabakh crisis.

"Additionally, [they] emphasized the significance of continuing efforts to stabilize the situation around Nagorno-Karabakh," the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement after Monday’s telephone conversation.

Sergey Lavrov and Cavusoglu discussed in a phone call prospects for deliveries of the Russian Sputnik V vaccine to Turkey and its production there.

"In conformity with the agreement between the two countries’ presidents, Sergey Lavrov and Mevlut Cavusoglu discussed prospects for the organization of deliveries of the Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine from Russia to Turkey, and also how to roll out its production there," the statement says.

Tensions in East Jerusalem started mounting since mid-April. On May 7, clashes between Israel’s border police and Palestinians broke out in two areas - near the Temple Mount and Sheikh Jarrah, where under the Israeli court’s ruling the forces are evicting several Arab families, triggering protests among local citizens and fierce clashes, which have been underway since late April.

Palestine’s WAFA news agency reported that the most violent clashes took place on Friday night and the early hours of Saturday near the Al-Aqsa Mosque, where rubber bullets, stun grenades and tear gas were used against the crowd by Israeli law enforcement officers. Then over 200 police officers stormed the courtyards of the mosque and the indoor prayer halls, forcing the worshippers to leave Al-Aqsa.​​​​​