Palestinians say Trump vowed not to move US embassy to Jerusalem

Trump will not go through with the embassy move, the PA intelligence chief reportedly told Abbas after meeting with US security officials. Reports from various media, however, are conflicting.   

After an initial meeting between the Palestinian Authority (PA) and the Trump administration, Palestinian Intelligence Chief Majed Faraj reportedly reassured PA head Mahmoud Abbas that the US will not move the embassy to Jerusalem, among other issues demonstrating that the Palestinians will not be ignored, as they had feared.

The Jerusalem Post quoted a report from the Palestinian Al-Quds daily, saying that “the Trump administration transferred a message to the Palestinian Authority that the embassy would not be moving to Jerusalem.”

The same report quoted Faraj as saying that top US security officials had sent “reassuring messages” on “settlements.”

According to Ha’aretz, Faraj had already met with Abbas and updated him on the talks, which helped assuage fears regarding US policy on the two-state solution, Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria and Trump’s pledge to move the embassy to Jerusalem.

An unnamed US official said on Thursday that Faraj met with US security and intelligence officials in Washington over the past two days. The official spoke on condition of anonymity in line with protocol. The Palestinian Ma’an news Agency quoted sources that said that different issues were discussed during the meetings in preparation for “serious dialogue between both sides,” although the exact issues discussed remained unclear.

Faraj’s name has been mentioned as a possible heir to Palestinian Authority head Mahmoud Abbas.

The Palestinian leadership had tried unsuccessfully to reach out to Trump and feared the possibility of being sidelined as the new administration appears to be embracing Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who heads to the White House this week.

A strong relationship with the US has been key to the Palestinian strategy for statehood. The US has served as sole broker in two decades of intermittent talks between Israel and the Palestinians.

By: AP and World Israel News Staff