Trump: No Embassy Move Until We ‘Give Peace a Chance’

Trump, Israel Trip, Embassy Move
The U.S. Embassy in Tel Aviv. (AP Photo/Ariel Schalit)

The U.S. Embassy will not be moved to Yerushalayim in the anytime soon – at least until new American peace proposals are given a chance to work, President Donald Trump said in a weekend interview. While the president foresees the move happening “in the not too distant future,” he told former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee on a talk show hosted by the latter, Trump said that he wants to give new American ideas “a shot before I even think about moving the embassy to Jerusalem.”

President Trump had promised to move the embassy several times during his presidential campaign, but reports almost immediately after he was elected said that he was “reconsidering” the idea. In an interview with Fox News in late January, President Trump said that it was “too early” to talk about moving the American embassy from Tel Aviv to Yerushalayim, further feeding speculation that Trump was backing away from his commitment to move the embassy, which he repeated several times during the campaign.

Congress in 1995 passed a law that would move the embassy from its current location in Tel Aviv to Yerushalayim, but allows the president to waive the move if he determines “that is necessary to protect the national security interests of the United States.” The waiver must be signed every six months, and has been thus signed faithfully by every president who has served sine 1998, when the law required that the embassy move take place.

Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas has stated several times that moving the American Embassy to Yerushalayim would be a “provocation,” and end all efforts to achieve peace.