• 21:45
  • 13.12.2017
Trump still weighing Jerusalem issue
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13.12.2017

Trump still weighing Jerusalem issue

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US President Donald Trump has not yet made a decision on whether to formally recognise Jerusalem as Israel's capital, his adviser and son-in-law Jared Kushner says.
"He's still looking at a lot of different facts, and then when he makes his decision, he'll be the one to want to tell you, not me," Kushner said on Sunday at an annual conference on US policy in the Middle East organised by the Brookings Institution think tank in Washington.
Some expect the president to make a declaration on Wednesday.
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The Palestinian president meanwhile has warned that American recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital would jeopardise the White House's nascent Mideast peace efforts.
President Mahmoud Abbas' comments on Sunday came amid a diplomatic push by the Palestinian leader to rally international support against the possible American move later this week.
"Any American step related to the recognition of Jerusalem as capital of Israel, or moving the US embassy to Jerusalem, represents a threat to the future of the peace process and is unacceptable for the Palestinians, Arabs and internationally," Abbas told a group of visiting Arab lawmakers from Israel, according to the official Wafa news agency.
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Israel regards Jerusalem as its capital, with most government functions, including the prime minister's office, Supreme Court and parliament, located in the holy city.
But the international community says the city's status should be determined through peace talks. The Palestinians claim east Jerusalem, captured by Israel in 1967, as their capital.
Kushner has held months of meetings with leaders across the region ahead of an expected peace initiative. While the proposal is expected to be regional in scope, little is known about the details, including whether Trump will continue the policies of recent predecessors in supporting the notion of an independent Palestinian state.
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