JERUSALEM — The top Roman Catholic cleric in the Holy Land says the status of Jerusalem should not be altered by “unilateral decisions,” amid protests over the U.S. recognition of the contested city as Israel’s capital.

Archbishop Pierbattista Pizzaballa said in a statement Wednesday that “unilateral decisions will not bring peace, but rather will distance it. Jerusalem is a treasure of all humanity. Any exclusive claim — be it political or religious — is contrary to the city’s own logic.”

President Donald Trump’s declaration earlier this month departed from decades of U.S. policy that the fate of Jerusalem should be decided through negotiations.

The Palestinians claim east Jerusalem, which includes sites holy to Muslims, Christians and Jews, as the capital of their future state. Israel claims the whole city as its capital.

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