Trump weighs embassy move's effect on Mideast peace process

Jordan, Egypt, Palestine reiterate commitment to Mideast peace

Visiting Riyadh, Jerusalem, Bethlehem and the Vatican is created to reflect an image of global peacemaker in the face of radical fundamentalist Islam.

Trump promised during his presidential campaign to move the United States embassy to Jerusalem and recognize the city as Israel's capital and remarked on the pledge in an interview the day before his inauguration, saying: "You know, I'm not a person who breaks promises".

However, Coalition chairman David Bitan said Monday that Netanyahu was not prepared to pay the political price the Trump Administration would demand in exchange for moving the embassy to Jerusalem.

As the Times of Israel notes, U.S. presidents have avoided the Western Wall because of the dispute over sovereignty.

Separately, Israelis were riled on Monday by a report on Channel 2 news that a member of the U.S. delegation making preparations for Mr Trump's visit rejected a request that Mr Netanyahu accompany Mr Trump when he visits the Western Wall, the Jewish religious site that lies in Jerusalem's Israeli-occupied eastern half.

Trump would be breaking with strong tradition if he does not attend the shrine and lay a wreath for Holocaust victims but neither the White House, the State Department or the Israeli Embassy in London were unable to confirm with IBTimes UK that he will be paying his respects.

Netanyahu wanted to join Trump on his visit to the Wall, which is unprecedented for a sitting president.

The White House distanced itself from the alleged comments, saying in statements to USA media that they did not reflect the views of the adminstration.

"What are you talking about?" the official reportedly told the Israeli team helping the USA prepare for the trip, according to the Times of Israel. It said the comment prompted shouting from the Israeli preparatory team.

Israel occupied east Jerusalem in 1967 and later annexed it in a move never recognised by the worldwide community.

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The date coincides with the 50th anniversary of the reunification of Jerusalem following the 1967 Six Day War, which will be commemorated in Israel beginning the evening of May 23 and the day of May 24.

Following his trip to the Middle East, Trump will arrive in the Vatican to meet Pope Francis for talks on cooperation regarding "religious communities in areas of joint concern", the White House said in a statement earlier this month. The Old City is also home to the Al Aqsa Mosque, the third-holiest site in Islam.

Petitions filed by such Israeli organisations have repeatedly led to the evacuation of illegal settlement outposts in the occupied West Bank that were built on privately owned Palestinian land.

"The things published on Fox New are a lie", the prime minister's office said in a statement Monday, according go the Jerusalem Post.

Trump is traveling to Israel on May 22, as part of his first trip overseas, which will also include a stop in Saudi Arabia.

Speaking of Trump, he said: "His love for and commitment to the state of Israel is rock solid and it enjoys his highest priority". His campaign platform made no mention of an independent Palestinian state.

Friedman, a fundraiser for settlement causes and vocal critic of liberal Jewish groups, has backtracked from some of his controversial positions.

The US and other countries have their embassies in Tel Aviv. "I prayed for the president, I wished him success especially on his upcoming trip". He is scheduled to meet Netanyahu in Jerusalem before travelling to Bethlehem to meet with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

That has been the Netanyahu line all along, but apparently the embassy move didn't come cost-free to the prime minister. The dispute arose when Netanyahu's emissaries tried to get the U.S. team to add Netanyahu to the visit as part of the official itinerary. He said Israel must oppose attempts to establish a Palestinian state and insist on Israeli sovereignty over Jerusalem "forever".

Be Civil - It's OK to have a difference in opinion but there's no need to be a jerk.

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