Malaysian PM leads protest in solidarity with Palestinians

A Muslim walks to Friday prayer as Malaysia and Palestine flags on display in Putrajaya, Malaysia, Friday, Dec. 22, 2017. Malaysia Prime Minister Najib Razak leads huge rally to protest US move to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital. (AP Photo/Vincent Thian)
A muslim waves Palestine flags during a rally at Putra Mosque in Putrajaya, Malaysia, Friday, Dec. 22, 2017. Malaysia Prime Minister Najib Razak led a huge rally to protest the U.S.President Donald Trump's move to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital. (AP Photo/Vincent Thian)
Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak, standing left, performs prayers in Putrajaya, Malaysia, Friday, Dec. 22, 2017. Najib leads a huge rally to protest U.S. move to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital. (AP Photo/Sadiq Asyraf)
A Muslim waves Palestine flags during a rally at Putra Mosque in Putrajaya, Malaysia, Friday, Dec. 22, 2017. Malaysia Prime Malaysia Prime Minister Najib Razak led a huge rally to protest the U.S.President Donald Trump's move to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital. (AP Photo/Vincent Thian)
A Muslim women stands in font of the Malaysia and Palestine flags on display in Putrajaya, Malaysia, Friday, Dec. 22, 2017. Malaysia prime minister Najib Razak led huge rally to protest US move to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital.(AP Photo/Vincent Thian)
Malaysia Prime Minister Najib Razak, center, speaks during a rally at the Putra Mosque in Putrajaya, Malaysia, Friday, Dec. 22, 2017. Malaysia Prime Minister Najib Razak led a huge rally to protest the U.S.President Donald Trump's move to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital. (AP Photo/Vincent Thian)
A Muslim boy eats his fruit during a rally at Putra Mosque in Putrajaya, Malaysia, Friday, Dec. 22, 2017. Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak is leading a huge rally to protest U.S. move to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital. The headband reads: "Save Palestine." (AP Photo/Vincent Thian)
Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak, third from right, attends Friday prayers in Putrajaya, Malaysia, Friday, Dec. 22, 2017. Najib leads a huge rally to protest U.S. move to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital. (AP Photo/Sadiq Asyraf)
Muslim waves Palestine flags during a rally at Putra Mosque in Putrajaya, Malaysia, Friday, Dec. 22, 2017. Malaysia Prime Minister Najib Razak led a huge rally to protest the U.S.President Donald Trump's move to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital. (AP Photo/Vincent Thian)
A Muslim man waves the Palestine flag during a rally at the Putra Mosque in Putrajaya, Malaysia, Friday, Dec. 22, 2017. Malaysia Prime Minister Najib Razak led a huge rally to protest the U.S.President Donald Trump's move to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital. (AP Photo/Vincent Thian)
Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak, third from left, and Muslims perform prayers in Putrajaya, Malaysia, Friday, Dec. 22, 2017. Najib leads a huge rally to protest U.S. move to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital. (AP Photo/Sadiq Asyraf)
Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak, right, talks with Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi during Friday prayers in Putrajaya, Malaysia, Friday, Dec. 22, 2017. Najib leads a huge rally to protest U.S. move to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital. (AP Photo/Sadiq Asyraf)
Malaysian Muslims attend Friday prayers in Putrajaya, Malaysia, Friday, Dec. 22, 2017. Prime Minister Najib Razak leads a huge rally to protest U.S. move to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital. (AP Photo/Sadiq Asyraf)
A Muslim takes a picture with her phone during a rally at the Putra Mosque in Putrajaya, Malaysia, Friday, Dec. 22, 2017. Malaysia Prime Minister Najib Razak led a huge rally to protest the U.S.President Donald Trump's move to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital. (AP Photo/Vincent Thian)
A muslim father taking picture of his son holding banner "Save Gaza" as they walks to Friday prayer in Putrajaya, Malaysia, Friday, Dec. 22, 2017. Malaysia prime minister Najib Razak led a huge rally to protest US move to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital. (AP Photo/Vincent Thian)
Muslims holds placards reading "Palestine will be Free" and "Anti-Israel" during a rally at the Putra Mosque in Putrajaya, Malaysia, Friday, Dec. 22, 2017. Malaysia Prime Minister Najib Razak led a huge rally to protest the U.S.President Donald Trump's move to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital. (AP Photo/Vincent Thian)

PUTRAJAYA, Malaysia — Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak led thousands of Muslims in a rally Friday to show solidarity with Palestinians, slamming the U.S. decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital.

Najib told the crowd that Malaysia will do all it can to "save Jerusalem" and that he will not be cowed by the U.S. nor by his close ties with President Donald Trump. Najib in September met Trump at the White House, and last month, posted a photograph of himself with Trump on Twitter on the sidelines of a regional meeting in Manila.

Malaysia on Thursday joined more than 120 countries voting in favor of a U.N. General Assembly resolution calling for the United States to drop its recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital, ignoring a threat by Trump to cut off financial aid to countries voting against his move.

"Yes, I have visited the White House and yes, Trump is a good acquaintance but I will not pawn the sanctity of Islam," Najib said to loud cheers at the protest outside a mosque in the government capital of Putrajaya after Friday prayers.

"We are firm in our stand. We support the formation of a Palestine that is free and sovereign. We demand a Palestine with dignity and pride. We want East Jerusalem as the capital of Palestine," he said.

Earlier this month, Trump reversed decades of U.S. policy by announcing the United States recognized Jerusalem — home to major Muslim, Jewish and Christian holy sites— as the capital of Israel and would move its embassy there.

Najib vowed to hold weekly protests in support of Palestinians. Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi told local media that the Cabinet would next month discuss a proposal by Najib for Malaysia to follow Turkey in opening an embassy in east Jerusalem to recognize the city as the Palestinian capital.

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