In terms of its location in the old geography of the Ottoman-Turkish heritage, the Consulate General of the Republic of Turkey is one of the important foreign missions of Turkey.
At the turn of the 20th century, Palestinian territories was divided into two principle administrative districts; to the north, the sanjaks of Acre and Nablus was part of the Vilayet of Beirut; to the south, the “Independent Governorate of Jerusalem” was directly attached to İstanbul. The increasing profile assumed by Jerusalem in particular and the Palestinian territories in general, through the direct link established between Jerusalem and the capital of the Ottoman Empire, was also emphasized by Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the founder of the Turkish Republic in various times.
The Consulate General of the Republic of Turkey, opened in 1925 following the declaration of the Republic, has the privilege of being one of the oldest diplomatic missions abroad directly linked to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Despite bearing an official title of “Consulate General”, it has the volume of work and qualities as the other Embassies abroad. In the long historical period to date, the area and scope of the mission of the Consulate General have been rearranged due to de facto border changes. Today, the jurisdiction of the Consulate General covers West Bank and Gaza Strip governed by the Palestinian National Authority. The city of Jerusalem with its surrounding areas as defined by the special status (corpus separatum) in the United Nations General Assembly Resolution No.181 in 1947, is also covered by the Consulate General.
In the wake of the 1967 war when Israel occupied East Jerusalem, West Bank and Gaza Strip, the attempt of the Israeli soldiers who entered the courtyard of Haram-ı Şerif to mount the Israeli flag on to the Dome of the “Kubbet-ü Sahra” was averted by the then Turkish General Consul.
After Israel declared Jerusalem as its “eternal and indivisible” capital in 1980, Turkey closed its Consulate General in Jerusalem as a sign of protestation. Following the positive atmosphere created by the Madrid Peace Conference, the Consulate General resumed its activities in September 1992 and has remained open so far.
In reflection of the high importance attached to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict in particular and the Middle East Peace Process in general in recent years, Turkey appointed an Ambassador as the Head of Mission to Jerusalem in 2005.
Today, the Consulate General of the Republic of Turkey, with a staff exceeding 30, is serving our citizens living in Palestinian territories in consulate affairs and performing its activities to enhance the bilateral relations in all spheres with the Palestinian National Authority in line with attaining a just, lasting and comprehensive peace and stability in the region.