Trump to visit Jewish, Christian holy sites in Jerusalem

Palestine President accorded reception at Rashtrapati BhawanMore

One US official said the Western Wall was part of the West Bank, Channel Two reported.

The site resides in annexed East Jerusalem, which Israel seized from Jordan in 1967.

"We are convinced that this statement is contrary to President Trump's policy ... It is a private visit by the president, and it's not your business".

While the controversy swirls, the identity of the U.S. official whose comments kicked off the uproar has not been revealed.

"This isn't your territory". Israel began its occupation of the West Bank at the same time; the occupation is regarded as illegal by most countries, though Israel disputes that.

Fox News correspondent Conor Powell had earlier posted on his Twitter account that "everyone" he had spoken to in Washington said that Netanyahu told Trump not to go through with the move.

President Donald Trump will not use his upcoming trip to Israel to announce plans to move the us embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, although he still ultimately wants to take that step, a senior administration official said on Wednesday.

Asked about the matter, a White House official told Reuters on Tuesday: "These comments were not authorized by the White House".

Just another day at the Western Wall.




A final meeting is expected to be held on Tuesday with the White House advance team, in which the timetable for the visit will be finalised. The call, first reported by the Israeli newspaper, Haaretz, lasted about 20 minutes and focused only on the president's visit to Israel next week. Then, on May 3, Palestinian leader, Mahmoud Abbas, was hosted at the White House.

The new U.S. ambassador to Israel, David Friedman, stepped out of the diplomatic protocol by visiting the Western Wall on Monday.

Emotions run hot over the status of Jerusalem and the Western Wall, considered the holiest site where Jews can pray.

It is highly unusual for a new envoy who had not yet presented his credentials to visit the holy site.

He has also advocated breaking with decades of precedent by moving the USA embassy from Tel Aviv to the divided city of Jerusalem, a prospect deeply alarming to Palestinians who see the occupied eastern half of the city as their future capital.

He said that Trump wants to see Israelis and Palestinians "sitting together without preconditions and talking, with the hope that this will lead to peace".

A diplomatic spat erupted between the USA and Israel days before President Trump's planned visit after an American official declared that the Western Wall - the holiest site in Judaism - is not part of the country.

McMaster made no mention of any plans for Trump to deliver an address from the desert fortress Masada, something that has been rumored for weeks.

The Western Wall, the holiest site where Jews can pray, is located in east Jerusalem, which was occupied by Israel in 1967 and later annexed in a move never recognised by the worldwide community.

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