President Trump’s most senior advisers are warning that moving the US embassy to Jerusalem would cause violence.
Speculation over President Donald Trump’s plans regarding the relocation of the US embassy to Jerusalem continues. CNN reports that senior figures in the State and Defense Departments advise against the move, warning it will inflame the region and cause violence. The US intelligence community has also expressed opposition to the move.
However, other advisers are pushing Trump to fulfill one of his major campaign promises, and the issue seems to be far from resolved.
Congress passed a law mandating the move to Jerusalem in 1995, but every president has since invoked the clause delaying its implementation due to the sensitive status of Jerusalem in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The current waiver expires on June 1.
Trump repeatedly pledged to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem during his campaign, and told Israel Hayom, “I remembered my promise” regarding the embassy. However, he has dragged his feet implementing it, with contradictory reports coming out of both the White House and Israel over the move’s status.
Trump recently told reporters at a press conference to “wait until the end of the month to find out.” Some commentators say this can point at Trump making an announcement over the embassy’s move in his upcoming Israel visit, or conversely, Trump’s decision to invoke the waiver, delaying the move.
In an interview with NBC’s Meet the Press Sunday, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson made the embassy move contingent on its effects for Israeli-Palestinian peace. “Trump has taken a deliberative approach to understanding the issue itself, listening to input from all interested parties in the region, and understanding, in the context of the peace initiative, what impact would such a move have,” said Tillerson.
“The President has recently expressed his view that he wants to put a lot of effort into seeing if we cannot advance a peace initiative between Israel and Palestine,” Tillerson said. “And so I think in large measure the President is being very careful to understand how such a decision would impact a peace process.”
By: Tzvi Lev, World Israel News