Palestinians urge boycott

JERUSALEM -- Palestinians are calling for a boycott of a marathon race in Jerusalem that winds through the city's eastern sector. Palestinians claim it as their capital.

The third annual Jerusalem marathon takes place Friday. Previous races have drawn thousands of runners from around the world and attracted international brands as sponsors.

In a statement Tuesday, the Palestine Liberation Organization called on marathon participants and sponsors to withdraw their support.

It says the marathon is another Israeli policy "aimed at exerting Israeli control over the occupied city." A spokesman for Jerusalem's municipality counters that the marathon is a "symbol of co-existence."

Both the Palestinians and Israel claim rights to Jerusalem. Israel captured east Jerusalem in the 1967 Mideast war and considers the whole city its capital. Israel's claim is not recognized internationally.

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