Mayor: Jerusalem is undivided capital of the Jewish people

This is a rush transcript from "Your World," December 6, 2017. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

NEIL CAVUTO, "YOUR WORLD" HOST: All right, Well, Palestinians burning images of the president today.

Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat with us.

Mayor, what do you think of the reaction this is getting pretty much across the world? I mentioned Germany and France not liking it. I mentioned the pope not liking it. What do you think?

NIR BARKAT, MAYOR OF JERUSALEM, ISRAEL: Well, first, I want to applaud and thank the president, president of the United States, President Trump.

It's a historic day for our region. Recognizing the history of Jerusalem with the Jewish people that goes back 3,000 years should have been done 70 years ago, when Israel was founded, 50 years ago, when the city was reunited, in 1995, when the Congress made a decision.

And, here, you have a president which is bold and keeps his promises, and I applaud him.

With respect to what the world says, it's unfortunate. We know that people have all kinds difference of opinions. But my expectation and Israelis' expectation is recognize the truth, the history.

Anyway you put a shovel in the ground in Jerusalem, you find Jewish roots. Stick to the truth. Be honest. And everyone knows that Jerusalem is the capital of the Jewish people. So, my expectation from the world, don't be political. Stick to the truth, like the president of the United States.

CAVUTO: Now, the pope and others have been saying that, while that is very important to Israel -- And I think, by extension, you can understand that, Mayor, that many people lay claim to this great city, and it can't be Israel's alone.

The fear is that if it is your capital, and we do build our embassy there, that it's being sort of cordoned off from the rest of the world. You say?

BARKAT: Well, the reality is that, in any potential deal, peace -- real peace deal with the Palestinians, Jerusalem is Israel's capital. It's an undivided capital of the Jewish people.

And, by the way, we take pride in the fact that today it's open, freedom of religion. You can go in one square kilometer in the Old City of Jerusalem, there are more functional mosques, synagogues and churches than anywhere in the world. We will maintain that.

We will maintain that status quo and freedom of religion, unlike other places in the Middle East. This is imperative for the city of Jerusalem to continue maintaining that status quo. And we're very proud of that.

CAVUTO: Finally, Mayor, you know, Turkey not satisfied with this. They had just, I wouldn't say normalized relations, but had looked into relations with Israel. Now they want to look into maybe stopping that progress.

How do you feel about that?

BARKAT: Well, it's unfortunate.

Hopefully, they will eventually understand the alignment and the fact that the United States of America is aligned with Israel and understands the reality, the path and the future.

And I can only hope that the Palestinians and the Arab neighbors around us will understand that this doesn't further peace. This brings peace, a real peace, not a theoretical peace, a real peace to the region.

And I believe that Prime Minister Netanyahu, with the backup of President Trump and rest of the rational world, will help us converge with a potential deal with the Palestinians, and improve relationship with our Arab neighbors. This is something we all strive for.

CAVUTO: Mayor, thank you very, very much. Appreciate it.

BARKAT: Thank you very much.

CAVUTO: All right.


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