May urges Trump to push Israel-PA peace deal

British Prime Minister urges U.S. President to bring forward proposals on achieving peace in the Middle East.

Elad Benari,

Donald Trump and Theresa May
Donald Trump and Theresa May
Reuters

British Prime Minister Theresa May on Tuesday urged U.S. President Donald Trump to bring forward proposals on achieving peace in the Middle East in the wake of his recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital, her spokesman said, according to Reuters.

May spoke to Trump by telephone.

"They discussed the different positions we took on the recognition of Jerusalem as the Israeli capital, and agreed on the importance of the U.S. bringing forward new proposals for peace and the international community supporting these efforts," said the spokesman.

"The Prime Minister updated the President on the recent good progress of the Brexit negotiations, and the President set out the progress he had made on his economic agenda. They agreed on the importance of a swift post-Brexit bilateral trade deal," he added.

The White House confirmed the telephone call, saying Trump and May talked about ways to move towards peace in the Middle East.

"The president and Prime Minister discussed next steps in forging peace in the Middle East," the White House said in a brief statement that made no mention of Trump's decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital.

"Both leaders also emphasized the urgency of addressing the humanitarian crisis in Yemen,” it added.

After Trump announced that Washington recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s capital on December 6, May said the UK disagreed with the move.

“We believe it is unhelpful in terms of prospects for peace in the region. The British Embassy to Israel is based in Tel Aviv and we have no plans to move it,” she said in a statement.

“Our position on the status of Jerusalem is clear and long-standing: it should be determined in a negotiated settlement between the Israelis and the Palestinians, and Jerusalem should ultimately be the shared capital of the Israeli and Palestinian states. In line with relevant Security Council Resolutions, we regard East Jerusalem as part of the Occupied Palestinian Territories,” added May.

The European Union rejected Trump's recognition of Jerusalem as the Israeli capital as well, saying they stuck by their view that the city's status should be settled by negotiation.

The EU’s foreign policy chief had previously voiced alarm at Trump’s decision, warning that it could take the situation "backwards to even darker times".


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