US embassy move to ‘probably’ take two more years
Moving the American embassy to Jerusalem "probably" won't happen for another two years, U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said on Dec. 8.
"This is not something that will happen this year or not even probably next year, but the President (Donald Trump) wants us to move forward very concretely and very resolutely," Tillerson said at a joint news conference with French foreign minister Jean-Yves Le Drian in Paris.
Despite widespread international opposition, including from France, Trump on Wednesday announced his decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, and said preparations would begin to move the U.S. Embassy there.
Tillerson said Trump's announcement "does not prejudge the final status" of Jerusalem, including the city borders, which will be left to negotiations between Israelis and Palestinians.
Trump's declaration sparked demonstrations in the occupied Palestinian territories as well as Turkey, Egypt, Jordan, Tunisia, Algeria, Iraq, and other majority-Muslim countries.
Jerusalem remains at the heart of the Israel-Palestine conflict, with Palestinians hoping that East Jerusalem -- now occupied by Israel – might eventually serve as the capital of a future Palestinian state.
During his presidential campaign last year, Trump repeatedly promised to relocate the embassy and acknowledge Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.