The US was yesterday scrambling to contain the diplomatic fallout of Donald Trump's decision on Jerusalem as Arab leaders threatened to cancel meetings with the American vice president and allies rounded on the US at the UN.
As protests broke out in the Palestinian territories and across the Middle East, leaving one man dead, US diplomats were working to salvage the visit of Mike Pence, the vice president, to the region amid public pressure on leaders not to meet with him.
Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestinian president, threatened to cancel his planned meeting with Pence, the first time in years that a Palestinian leader has so publicly challenged the White House.
"Jerusalem is more important than the American administration and we will not give up on it in return for a meeting with the US vice president," a spokesman for Abbas told al-Jazeera.
Another senior Palestinian official said Pence, who is understood to be a strong supporter of Israel and stood at Trump's side during his Jerusalem speech was "unwelcome in Palestine".
The same message was scrawled in graffiti on walls in Bethlehem, where Pence was scheduled to meet Abbas.
US officials said they had expected Palestinian anger over Trump's announcement but warned that it would "counterproductive" for the Palestinian president to so publicly snub America's second-highest leader.
As well as visiting Israel and the occupied West Bank, Pence is expected to travel to Egypt.
His office had requested a meeting with Sheikh Ahmed al-Tayeb, Egypt's most senior Muslim cleric, but the sheikh said he would refuse to meet him until the US reversed its decision on Jerusalem.
A spokesman for Pence said: "We are still finalising the vice president's travel schedule and will make more of it public in the coming days."
As noisy but largely peaceful protests churned outside US embassies in the Middle East, America found itself isolated at the UN Security Council where France and other allies accused Trump of violating international law.
Francois Delattre, France's UN ambassador, called the American recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital "null and void" because it contradicted a 1980 UN Security Council resolution on the status of Jerusalem.
"It is henceforth necessary for the US to specify how President Trump's announcement complies with international law," he said. "At stake is respect for international law."
Fourteen of the council's 15 members, including the UK, criticised the decision - leaving US ambassador Nikki Haley to sit and listen as nation after nation denounced Trump's move.
When it was her turn to speak, Haley was defiant and defended the unilateral US move.
"The UN has done much more to damage the prospects of peace than advance it," she said.
"The United States will not be lectured to by any country that does not treat Israel fairly."
Several thousand young Palestinians clashed with Israeli forces in Gaza and the occupied West Bank and one man was killed by Israeli gunfire in Gaza. The Red Crescent said around 250 injuries were recorded.
The violence was not as serious as some had feared after Hamas and other Palestinian factions called for a "Day of Rage" in response to the US move.
Thousands more demonstrated outside the US embassy in the Jordanian capital Amman, where there is a large Palestinian population, and there were more demonstrations in Cairo, Tunis and Tehran.
Israel's military said its Iron Dome missile defence system had shot down a rocket fired from Gaza. No injuries were reported.
The Palestinian Liberation Organisation's executive committee, chaired by Abbas, is due to meet today to formulate its official response to the US move and decide on whether to meet with Pence.
Grant Rumley, a political analyst who recently wrote a biography of Abbas, said the Palestinian president was under significant public pressure not to go ahead with the meeting.
"There is a lot of animosity among the Palestinian people towards the US right now and a lot of that is direction of Mike Pence. A lot of Palestinians would not want to see their president meet with him," Rumley said.
"On the other hand, Pence is still the vice president of the US and its an opportunity for Abbas to be productive and try to forge forward."