On Wednesday, Donald Trump delivered a speech at the White House in which he formally recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, reversing nearly 70 years of American foreign policy and setting in motion a plan to move the United States Embassy from Tel Aviv to the fiercely contested Holy City.
“Today we finally acknowledge the obvious that Jerusalem is Israel’s capital,” Mr. Trump said from the Diplomatic Reception Room of the White House. “This is nothing more or less than recognition of reality. It is also the right thing to do. It is something that has to be done.”
There will of course be disagreement and dissent regarding this announcement,” the president said. He appealed for the calm moderation and for the voices of tolerance to prevail over the purveyors of hate.
He directed the state department to make arrangements to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. An officer said that shifting US embassy will take around three years.
Other presidents had made a major campaign promise but they failed to deliver. Trump said that recognizing Jerusalem was a long overdue step to advance the peace process.
Vice-president Mike Pence stood behind Trump as he delivered his address. He was symbolizing the support of Christian conservatives.
US President Donald Trump appointed Jared Kushner and Jason Greenblatt on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. They both had been working for months to prepare for a negotiation between Israelis and Palestinians. It was not clear that this move squared with the efforts of Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner, and his special representative on international negotiations, Jason Greenblatt, to engineer a peace proposal with the support of the Israelis, Palestinians and regional powers like Saudi Arabia. Middle East experts said, their efforts would be jeopardized by Wednesday’s announcement. But it seemed that Mr. Kushner and Mr. Greenblatt, the president’s special envoy, supported the president’s move, officials said.
Peter Welch, a Democratic congressman said that he was confused by Trump’s move as the Kushner-Greenblatt initiative appeared to have been showing promise. He said, “The president was going over establishing good ties with the Sunni states. He obviously had close relationships with the Israeli government. He was making progress even with the skeptics in the Palestinian Authority, and with a single announcement he blew it all up.”