‘Ways to Advance Peace’ on Agenda for ‘Historic’ Trump Visit to Israel

Historic visit this week as U.S. President Donald Trump (left) meets Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (right). Illustrative. Photo courtesy of Kobi Gideon (GPO)

United States President Donald Trump’s first presidential trip outside the U.S. will continue from Saudi Arabia to Israel on Monday, and the Middle East peace process is fully expected to be on his agenda. Trump is set to visit Jerusalem and meet with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who called the trip “historic” in comments from his office on Sunday. “This is President Trump’s first visit outside the U.S., and the honor is ours that he has chosen to come to Jerusalem, the capital of Israel, and—of course—to the State of Israel,” said Netanyahu.

“I will discuss with President Trump ways to strengthen even further the first and strongest alliance with the US. We will strengthen security ties, which are strengthening daily, and we will also discuss ways to advance peace.” That last point has gotten a lot of attention in recent months as Trump has met with Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in the U.S. and discussed the dormant peace process between the sides. Trump’s last host on his journey—the Saudi government—is willing to work with the American leader on this goal.

Following Trump’s meeting with the Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Saudi Foreign Minister Adel bin Ahmed Al-Jubeir said the King “expressed the Kingdom’s optimism that President Trump, with a new approach and determination, can bring a conclusion to this long conflict.”

“[Trump] certainly has the vision and we believe he has the strength and the decisiveness, and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia stands prepared to work with the United States in order to bring about peace between Israelis and Palestinians and Israelis and Arabs,” Al-Jubeir said in comments from a joint U.S.-Saudi press briefing on Saturday published by the U.S. State Department.

Trump plans to do more than just talk peace with Netanyahu, however, The U.S. President also is set to visit the residence of Israeli President Reuven Rivlin, lay a wreath at the Yad Vashem Holocaust Musuem, and deliver a speech at the Israel Museum.

Netanyahu said on Sunday that they looked forward to Trump’s visit. Said the Israeli leader, “The citizens of Israel will receive you with open arms.

(By Joshua Spurlock, www.themideastupdate.com, May 21, 2017)

What do you think?