Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat signed a law on Saturday to make Jerusalem the capital of the future Palestinian state.
Ahmed Qurei, speaker of the legislative Palestinian Council based in Ramallah, was quoted by reports reaching there as saying that Arafat's move was in response to the recent efforts by the US congress to push for the Bush administration's early recognition of Jerusalem as the Israeli capital.
The law just signed by Arafat was passed by the Palestinian Council two years ago, Qurei said.
And in Washington, while signing the Foreign Relations Authorization Act on September 30, US President George W. Bush made it clear that his administration has not changed its position on the Jerusalem issue, namely it is up to the Palestinians and Israelis to decide the future of the city.
The east part of Jerusalem, once under Jordanian rule, was occupied by Israel in the 1967 Mideast war, and the entire ancient city now is under Israeli control.
As the status of Jerusalem remains a sticking block in any possible solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, the entire Arab world sides with Palestinians in claiming the holy city as the future Palestinian capital, and some Arab nations and regional groups have already denounced the recent US congressional move on the issue.