U.S. President Donald Trump continues to discuss the possibility of moving the American embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, White House press secretary Sean Spicer said on Wednesday.
Spicer’s remarks at his daily press briefing came in response to a question about Vice President Mike Pence’s comments on Tuesday that Trump was still looking at moving the embassy. The reporter noted that Palestinian Authority (PA) chairman Mahmoud Abbas, during his meeting with Trump, said he wanted eastern Jerusalem to be the capital of a future Palestinian state.
“I think the Vice President, as you noted, commented yesterday that it’s still something that is being discussed and considered by the President. It will continue to be a discussion that he has with both Prime Minister Netanyahu and President Abbas,” said Spicer, who stressed that these discussions are private and therefore he would not comment further.
“[T]hey had a series of private discussions. That is why the President is able to effectively get things done for this country is to not negotiate out in public. He’s going to continue to have discussions with Prime Minister Netanyahu, President Abbas moving forward, and he feels confident about where that relationship was and developments that were made today,” stressed Spicer.
Moving the American embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem in recognition of Jerusalem being Israel’s capital was a central campaign promise of President Donald Trump.
Despite the campaign promises, however, things seem to have stalled. Spicer told reporters several months ago that no decision has been made yet on the subject.
Trump himself appeared to back down a bit from his campaign pledge, telling the Christian Broadcasting Network (CBN) last month that such a move would not be “easy”.
At the same time, a senior Republican official recently said that Trump is likely to use his upcoming trip to Israel to announce the relocation of the embassy.