Published: Thu, May 18, 2017
Hi-Tech | By Grace Becker

Trump to visit Jewish, Christian holy sites in Jerusalem

Trump to visit Jewish, Christian holy sites in Jerusalem

Trump promised during his presidential campaign to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital and move the embassy to Jerusalem from Tel Aviv and his decision to at least delay any such move represents a setback for his conservative supporters who hoped Trump would make good on his pledge. The president welcomed Israeli Prime Mini...

Trump will say a prayer at the Western Wall, national security adviser H.R. McMaster said, as well as pay a visit to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, considered by Christians to be the site of Jesus' tomb.

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

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.

Trump will open his trip by laying a wreath at the Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum in Jerusalem, he said, and "will then deliver remarks at the Israel museum and celebrate the unique history of Israel and of the Jewish people, while reaffirming America's unshakeable bond with our closest ally in the Middle East". However, Muslims also lay claim to the site.

The Old City also is home to the Al Aqsa Mosque, the third-holiest site in Islam.

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Asked about the matter, a White House official told Reuters on Tuesday: "These comments were not authorized by the White House". Speaking to 103 FM, a local radio station, he suggested Israel "punish" the withholding certain information.

He said USA special envoy to the Middle East Jason Greenblatt has arrived in the region and was scheduled to meet Palestinian officials on Wednesday and Thursday in preparation for Trump's visit.

On Monday, Fox News correspondent Conor Powell tweeted that "Everyone I've spoken to in DC that has been briefed on #Jerusalem embassy move says #Netanyahu told #Trump not to move embassy at this time".

On Monday, Mr. Trump's newest ambassador to Israel David Friedman paid a visit to the Western Wall to pray upon arriving to his new post.

At that meeting, he said he would support a single state if it led to peace, delighting Israeli right-wingers who want to see their country annex most of the occupied West Bank.

"I know it's going to be an awesome trip". She said she wasn't sure what happened in the dispute over Trump's trip, adding: "I know that they're trying to fix it and get that taken care of, but we've always thought the Western Wall was part of Israel".

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