Trump, Netanyahu to Talk Sunday

by Jared Lewis January 23, 2017, 0:29

President Donald Trump Sunday has invited Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to visit him in Washington next month, the White House announced Sunday, in what could be a new chapter in close relations with Netanyahu's government.

Earlier Sunday, Netanyahu thanked Trump for his inaugural speech pledge to battle radical Islamic militants.

"A telephone conversation will be held this evening between President Trump and me".

Netanyahu said at the start of his weekly cabinet meeting that he meant to discuss with Trump the conflict with the Palestinians, Syria and "the Iranian threat" in what will be the first telephone conversation with the billionaire businessman since taking office.

"The supreme goal of the state of Israel continues to be stopping the Iranian threat and stopping the threat from the bad nuclear deal signed with Iran", he said.

The intractable Israeli-Palestinian conflict have gone through many diplomatic manoeuvres - Madrid Conference 1991, Oslo Accords 1993, Camp David Summit 2000, Taba negotiations 2001, the Arab Peace Initiative 2002, besides the US-led negotiations during 2013-2014. "The time has come to implement this in practice and move the embassy to Jerusalem".

Israeli right-wing politicians may see a chance to push forward with much wider settlement programmes.

Settlements in both the West Bank and east Jerusalem are viewed as illegal under worldwide law. "And this is a message to the world that they can build wherever they want, including on the land of a future Palestinian state".

The International Union for Muslim Scholars (IUMS) has warned against the planned relocation of the USA embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

The global community and the Palestinians argue that making Maaleh Adumim an official part of Israel will prevent the formation of a Palestinian state since it would prevent territorial contiguity.

Commentators in Israel have said it was too early to tell what Mr Trump's policy on these matters will actually be once he takes office. Former president Obama declined to use the U.S. veto against the resolution, allowing it to pass 14-0.

Such a move would cause a major clash with the Palestinians and the rest of the global community, which consider settlements to be illegal. In comparison, around 2.9 million Palestinians live in the West Bank and east Jerusalem.

Unlike other West Bank settlements, Israel annexed east Jerusalem and considers its neighborhoods inseparable parts of its capital.


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