President Trump makes history with arrival at Western Wall

May 22, 2017 16:19
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Breaking news. (photo credit: JPOST STAFF)

US President Donald Trump arrived at the Western Wall, Judaism's holiest site, Monday afternoon after visiting the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. Trump becomes the first sitting US president to visit the site.

Trump arrived at the Wall, known in Hebrew as the Kotel, shortly after 4:00pm with his team of senior advisers and his wife, Melania Trump.

The US president was not accompanied by an Israeli government official, including Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, a decision which caused a mild rift in diplomatic ties late last week.

A senior figure in the Trump administration rebuffed a request by Israeli officials to have Netanyahu accompany Trump on his visit to the Western Wall, telling his counterpart that the site "was not on Israeli territory."

Israel considers all of Jerusalem its "undivided eternal capital," including the Western Wall located in Jerusalem's Old City in east Jerusalem, which was captured in 1967 during the Six-Day-War.

Palestinians hope to make east Jerusalem the capital of a future state, a demand which has proved to be a source of tension in peace negotiations.

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