DONALD Trump has come under fire after saying he won’t consider moving America’s embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem until he has tried to achieve a Middle East peace deal.
“I want to give that a shot before I even think about moving the embassy,” the president said.
He told interviewer Mike Huckabee on American TV: “If we can make peace between the Palestinians and Israel, I think it’ll lead to, ultimately, peace in the Middle East, which has to happen.”
Asked about a time frame to move the embassy, Trump said: “We’re going to make a decision in the not-too-distant future.”
But Israel’s Jerusalem Affairs Minister, Ze’ev Elkin, said: “I am very disappointed that President Trump chose to delay implementing his campaign promise to move the embassy to Jerusalem due to an illusion that a real peace process can be advanced with the current Palestinian administration.”
Elkin added: “Anyone who sees the incessant incitement from the Palestinian Authority, which refuses to stop paying salaries to terrorists, elects a murderer as Hebron mayor and embraces Hamas, understands that the last thing to expect from Mahmoud Abbas is advancing peace.”
However, Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat said he was still confident that Trump would keep his promise to move the embassy to Jerusalem.
“Moving the embassy to the eternal capital of the Jewish people is the right thing to do, with or without a peace agreement,” he said.