By Fares Karam
RIYADH (AA) – Saudi King Salman bin Abdul-Aziz on Sunday donated $150 million to Jerusalem Islamic Waqf, an agency tasked with overseeing the Islamic holy sites in East Jerusalem.
Speaking at the annual Arab summit in the eastern Saudi city of Dhahran, the Saudi monarch also offered $50 million in aid to the UN refugee agency UNRWA.
"Palestine and its people are in the hearts of all Arabs and Muslims,” he told participants in the summit.
The Saudi king also announced that the one-day meeting would be named “Jerusalem Summit”.
Sixteen Arab leaders are attending the summit, which comes one day after the U.S., France and Britain launched joint airstrikes in Syria in the wake of a suspected chemical attack by regime forces.
The Syrian conflict, the Palestinian issue and alleged Iranian interference are expected to dominate discussions during the one-day event.
Sunday's summit comes three months after the U.S. officially recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, triggering world outcry.
One month after the U.S. decision, Washington announced in January that it was withholding $65 million in aid to UNRWA.
Jerusalem remains at the heart of the Middle East conflict, with Palestinians hoping that East Jerusalem — occupied by Israel since 1967 — might eventually serve as the capital of a Palestinian state.