Trump still undecided on Israel’s capital, says Kushner and AL chief warns against move

Arab League chief warns Trump Jerusalem move could fuel violence
Arab League chief warns Trump Jerusalem move could fuel violence

President Donald Trump has not yet decided whether to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital or whether to proceed immediately in moving the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to the holy city. That’s according to his son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner.

Kushner said Sunday that the president continues to weigh his options ahead of an announcement on the matter that is expected this week.

“The president is going to make his decision,” Kushner said in a rare public appearance at an event hosted by the Brookings Institution, a Washington think tank. “He is still looking at a lot of different facts.”

Kushner’s comments were his first public remarks on his efforts to restart peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians. And, they came as he faces increasing scrutiny over actions taking during the transition period following former national security adviser Michael Flynn’s guilty plea on charges of lying to the FBI.

Shortly before Kushner spoke, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas warned that American recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital would jeopardize the White House’s Mideast peace efforts.

“Any American step related to the recognition of Jerusalem as capital of Israel, or moving the U.S. 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 Arab lawmakers from Israel, according to the official Wafa news agency.

U.S. officials said last week that Trump is poised to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital in a move that would upend decades of U.S. policy but also to put off once again moving the embassy from Tel Aviv. The officials said Trump is expected to make his decision known in a speech on Wednesday.

The highly charged declaration risks inflaming tensions across the Middle East, and U.S. embassies and consulates around the region have been warned to expect protests. But it would also offset disappointment from Trump supporters from deferring once again his campaign promise to move the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem.

Trump’s announcement will follow months of internal deliberations that grew particularly intense last week, according officials familiar with the discussions. They described the president as intent on fulfilling his pledge to move the embassy but also mindful that doing so could set back his aim of forging a long-elusive peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinians, who claim part of Jerusalem as the capital of an eventual state.

Moving the embassy could spark widespread protest across the Middle East and undermine an Arab-Israeli peace push led by Kushner. Trump’s campaign season promises won him the support of powerful pro-Israel voices in the Republican Party. But as president, he has faced equally forceful lobbying from close U.S. allies such as King Abdullah II of Jordan, who have impressed on him the dangers in abandoning America’s carefully balanced position on the holy city.

Under U.S. law signed by President Bill Clinton in 1995, the U.S. must relocate its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem unless the president waives the requirement on national security grounds, something required every six months. If the waiver isn’t signed and the embassy doesn’t move, the State Department would lose half its funding for its facilities and their security around the world. Republicans have championed embassy security since a 2012 attack on American compounds in Benghazi, Libya.

Trump is likely to issue a waiver on moving the embassy by Monday, the officials said, though they cautioned that the president could always decide otherwise.

All presidents since Clinton have issued the waiver, saying Jerusalem’s status is a matter for Israelis and Palestinians to negotiate. Trump signed the waiver at the last deadline in June, but the White House made clear he still intended to move the embassy.


The Arab League chief said on Sunday a decision by US President Donald Trump to recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital would boost fanaticism and violence, and not serve the Israeli-Palestinian peace process.

“It is unfortunate that some are insisting on carrying out this step without any regard to the dangers it carries to the stability of the Middle East and the whole world,” Ahmed Abul Gheit, head of the Arab League, told reporters in Cairo on Sunday.

Abul Gheit said the Arab League is closely following the issue and is in contact with the Palestinian authorities and Arab states to coordinate the Arab position if Trump takes the step.


  • Danny Farah

    Let’s see what Trump will say tomorrow about this. I am sure Israel and the Palestinians are on edge. But I hope he doesn’t go thru with it.

  • Hannibal

    “But it would also offset disappointment from Trump supporters…”
    Which supporters? The white supremacist? I doubt it.

    • Hind Abyad

      “Egypt, Jordan Warn U.S. Over Trump’s Plan to Recognize Jerusalem as Israeli Capital”
      The countries’ foreign ministers tell the U.S. secretary of state that the move could lead to a collapse of the Israeli-Palestinian peace process”
      I can’t enter more..not subscribed.

      • Rainbow Sponge

        Subscribing would be giving money to the zionist regime. Why even quote them? x

        • Hind Abyad

          “Theresa May’s Epic ‘Saturday Night Live’ Debut Breaks the Internet”

          • Rainbow Sponge

            I saw that, I actually didn’t find it that funny. That actress does a better sketch of Kellyanne Conway.

          • Hind Abyad

            Not interested don’t know kellyanne.

            Go away Nohra you and your trolls had your fiesta yesterday making threads a mess blocking discussions. Blocked.

          • Rainbow Sponge


        • Y K

          No worries, most Haaretz writers hate Israel almost as much as Bumbyad does. 🙂

          • Niemals

            That’s is the reason that she is Twitter so many of Haaretz articles.
            It would be interesting to know if she is paying for the subscription too. 💶💸

    • Y K

      Plural-singular. Singular-plural. I know a janitor isn’t required to pay attention to such niceties, but we’re trying to civilize you here, pal. At least a bit.

      • Hannibal

        pal? NOT OK Biatch? Now Go Away…

        • Y K

          Of course, pal. After all, you are my pal, pal. Your welfare is dear to my heart.

  • Hind Abyad

    “Trump, Take Note: How Jerusalem Went From Hosting 16 Embassies to Zero”
    President Donald Trump may still be mulling whether to move the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, but countries such as Chile, the Netherlands and Kenya once had ambassadors in the city

  • Hind Abyad

    “There has not been a war in Israel from 1948 till the present ongoing burst
    of violence which began in October 2000, that has not been perceived, defined
    and conceptualized in terms of the Holocaust.’ (p.4)”

    “In November 1948, Eliezer Peri, the editor of Mapam’s paper Al Hamishmar, received a letter describing a massacre at al-Dawayima. Benny Morris estimated that ‘hundreds’ were killed. Agriculture Minister, Aharon Cisling referred to a letter he had received about the atrocities declaring: ‘I couldn’t sleep all night … This is something that determines the character of the nation … Jews too have committed Nazi acts.’ [The Birth of the Palestine Refugee Problem Revisited, p. 488., Benny Morris, Cambridge University Press, 2004].”

    Similar comments were made by Yosef Nahmani, a senior officer of Haganah. He was stunned by the cruelty of Israeli troops towards Arab villagers. He described how in Safsaf, the villagers raised the white flag but 60-70 men and women were massacred and asked: ‘where did they learn cruel conduct such as that of the Nazis?’ According to one officer, ‘the most eager were those who had come from the [concentration] camps…’ [Zertal, p.171].”

  • Hind Abyad

    “Turkey’s Erdogan Threatens to Cut Ties With Israel Over U.S. Embassy Decision: Jerusalem ‘Red Line’ for Muslims
    Possible U.S. recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital this week has prompted backlash from across the Middle East”

    Reuters Dec 05, 2017 11:25 AM
    read more:

    • Y K

      Didn’t you use to hate Erdogan? I guess all is forgotten now. 🙂