Does US believe Western Wall is in Israel?


David Friedman, the controversial new US ambassador to Israer, has arrived in the country to take up his post, just days before a visit by US President Donald Trump.Since both Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas have expressed interest in returning to the negotiating table with no preconditions, “we don’t think it’s the right time to do it right now”, the official said.In a series of statements, in Israel and in Washington, Trump officials have been evasive or noncommittal about whether the Western Wall is in Israel.On Tuesday, White House Spokesman Sean Spicer affirmed that the holy site is “clearly in Jerusalem”.A senior member of the US delegation helping to prepare President Donald Trump’s visit to Israel next week denied a request that would have allowed Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to visit the Western Wall alongside Trump, saying that “it’s not your territory”. An official, later identified by Israel’s Channel 2 as David Berns, political counselor at the USA consulate in Jerusalem, reportedly snapped, “This isn’t your territory”. In 1980, Israel declared “reunited” Jerusalem its capital in a move unrecognized by major states. And insisted Israel and Netanyahu should have nothing to do with that part of Trump’s visit because it’s occupied territory.Israel occupied east Jerusalem in 1967 and later annexed it in a move never recognised by the global community.Israel objected and sought to make it a public visit with Netanyahu escorting him, which United States diplomats rejected, with one noting Israel doesn’t have sovereignty over the Western Wall. The city is claimed as a capital by both Jews and Palestinians, however, and relocating the USA embassy – essentially declaring Jerusalem to be Israeli territory – would raise tensions.White House officials were considering announcing the US’ recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and moving the embassy to the city during the President’s trip there next week. The Western Wall is part of Israel, US Ambassador to the UN Nikkey Haley said on Tuesday as she took a number of stands that appears to differ from the Trump Administration. Those prayers were answered 50 years ago next week as Jerusalem was reunified by Israeli forces in the Six-Day War – and Jews across the globe will celebrate this anniversary.Israel regards Jerusalem as its eternal and indivisible capital and wants all foreign countries to base their embassies there. He said that didn’t represent Trump’s views but it apparently does represent USA policy; he twice refused to say whether the Wall is in Israel.”I know the president is working on this and is thinking about it”, said Friedman, who owns an apartment in Jerusalem and is heavily invested philanthropically in the settlement movement. But speaking to reporters Tuesday, McMaster twice declined to say definitively whether the Western Wall is in Israel.