President Trump is about to decide whether to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, according to his son-in-law, Jared Kushner.
"The president is going to make his decision," Kushner said Sunday, speaking at the Saban Forum at the Brookings Institution in Washington, DC "He is still investigating many facts, and when he makes his decision, he will be the one to tell you. "
Kushner did not specify when an announcement would be made, but said: "He will make sure that he does it at the right time."
On Sunday at Fox News, the national security adviser H.R. McMaster said he was not sure what Trump was planning to do.
"I'm not sure what decision he will make, we have given him options," said McMaster. "There are options that involve moving an embbady sometime in the future, which I think could be used to gain momentum towards a peace agreement and a solution that works for both Israelis and Palestinians."
Today in Israel, US Ambbadador David Friedman told Israeli reporters : "You will learn this week with everyone else."
The six-month exemption  ] By law, President Trump must decide today whether to sign a waiver that would delay a transfer from the US Embbady. UU In Tel Aviv for another six months, State Department officials told ABC News. He has already signed the resignation once. Now he faces a choice between fulfilling his campaign promises or taking the more diplomatic route of his predecessors.
Since 1995, every president of the United States. UU He has signed the resignation, despite some of his own campaign promises.
In the spring of 2016, Trump said in a speech to AIPAC, one of the most powerful advocacy groups promoting relations between the US. UU And Israel, "we will move the United States Embbady to the eternal capital city of the Jewish people, Jerusalem."
"I did not come here tonight to spoil you about Israel," he added. "That's what politicians do, everybody talks, they do not do anything, believe me."
Previous candidates from both parties have promised to move the embbady to Jerusalem, but none has complied after arriving at the Oval Office.
As a presidential candidate, George W. Bush told AIPAC in 2000: "As soon as I take office, I will begin the process of moving the United States ambbadador to the city that Israel has chosen as its capital."
In March 1992, when Bill Clinton was a candidate, he said: "I believe in the principle of moving our embbady to Jerusalem, but once again, I do not think we should do anything to interfere with the peace process."
"The consistent policy of Israel is that the Embbady of the United States, like other embbadies, should be in Jerusalem, our eternal capital," the Office of the Prime Minister of Israel said in a statement in June.
The option of maintaining the embbady in Tel Aviv but recognizing a unified Jerusalem
In addition to reflecting on the move of the embbady, the White House is considering new steps to formally recognize a unified Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, said sources to ABC News.
But there is a possibility that these two moves may take place separately.
Administration officials did not say what Trump would do, but many expect progress on plans to relocate the embbady, even if he signs the resignation today.
Among the options that are reportedly being considered: issuing a statement this week to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel or a directive directed at US diplomats to carry out all official business there.
Friedman has always supported this idea. More recently, when addressing the Israeli newspaper The Jerusalem Post, he said: "It's something we think about all the time."
When Israeli media reported this week that moves to relocate the embbady were imminent, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders called the reports "premature" but did not rule out anything.
"We have nothing to announce," he said.
An official of the US Embbady UU He told ABC News that a transfer to Jerusalem was a matter of time.
"Last June, the president said it was about when the embbady would move, not if," the official told ABC News.
Vice President Mike Pence suggested last week in a speech honoring the 70th anniversary of Israel's recognition by the UN that the administration is simply in charge of organizing logistics, saying: "President Donald Trump is actively considering when and how to move the US embbady in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. "
Effects on peace plans
Experts say that recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel at this time would not serve the peace process.
"There is absolutely no interest in the US," said Aaron David Miller, vice president of the Wilson Center and former negotiator for the Middle East State Department under Republican and Democratic administrations, in a tweet over the weekend. . And "it would complicate Trump's own peace initiative and inject the most volatile issue into the mix at once, which only makes sense for the endlessly obtuse."
Recognizing West Jerusalem as the capital of Israel is not an ender or cosmic world Oy Vey. But there is absolutely no interest of the United States; it will complicate Trump's own peace initiative and inject the most volatile issue into the mix at a time that only makes sense for the endless obtuse.
– Aaron David Miller (@ aarondmiller2) December 2, 2017
"The" Odds of Trump stumbling on his Jerusalem tactic are pretty good. That's because the objective of the exercise does not seem to be designed to achieve real foreign policy objectives, "Miller wrote in an op-ed.
"The only problem for the mediator is how to protect the interests, image and credibility of the United States," he argued. "That's the key." The real question, he says, is whether this is a single strategy or part of it.
"Perhaps the administration believes that a statement is less harmful than actually starting the process of opening an embbady," Miller said. "But unless the measure is part of a prenegotiated agreement with Israel that offers significant concessions to the Palestinians, it would not serve any convincing national interest of the United States."
Former US ambbadador to Israel, Martin Indyk, also intervened, tweeting: "Do not underestimate Trump's desire to alter the status quo in Jerusalem with the theory that getting out of the crisis can be an opportunity. Beware: Jerusalem is a dangerous place to try a theory. "
Do not underestimate Trump's desire to disturb the status quo in Jerusalem with the theory that getting out of the crisis can be an opportunity. You should be careful: Jerusalem is a dangerous place to try a theory. https://t.co/UPEJI4Mttd
– Martin Indyk (@Martin_Indyk) December 3, 2017
On Sunday, Kushner spoke for the first time publicly about peace in the Middle East. Addressing a room full of diplomats, policy experts and former negotiators at the annual Saban Forum, he expressed optimism but never mentioned a future Palestinian state or the words "two-state solution".
"We think it's feasible," he told the crowd.
Miller, however, considers that the chances of reaching the final agreement – an agreement to end the conflict between Israelis and Palestinians – are "slim".
Kushner outlined his broad regional strategy, which includes a more formal Arab-Israeli agreement based on mutual interests.
"Regional dynamics play an important role in what we believe are opportunities," he said. "Many of these countries look and say that everyone wants the same thing.
"And they look at the regional threats, and I think they see Israel, which is traditionally their enemy, it's an ally much more natural to them than it was 20 years ago," Kushner explained, without naming Saudi Arabia or others Arab states.
But before that happens, he said, an Israeli-Palestinian peace agreement must be signed. "There are a lot of people who want to put this together, but we have to overcome this problem of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict for that to happen."
Speaking in the Knesset on Monday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu noted an "unprecedented" change in the attitude of the Arab states towards his country.
During his 30-minute conversation, he did not disclose any details of a possible peace plan, and Palestinian sources have denied reports in Israeli and US media that Crown Prince Mohammed of Saudi Arabia served Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. bin Salman two weeks ago during a visit to Riyadh.
Palestinian and Muslim leaders condemn any policy change
Israelis consider Jerusalem to be the capital of their country, but Palestinians claim that East Jerusalem is the capital of their future state. Moving the US embbady to Jerusalem or recognizing a unified Jerusalem as the Israeli capital would not be acceptable to Palestinians or leaders throughout the Muslim world.
"Move the US Embbady to Jerusalem or recognize the city as the capital of Israel: both are equally dangerous to the future of the peace process and push the region to instability," said Nabil Abu Rudeineh , spokesman for Abbas.
On Sunday night, Abbas, a member of the Fatah party in the West Bank, spoke with the Hamas leader in Gaza, Ismail Haniya, and the two agreed that they would not accept any change in US policy. UU On Jerusalem, according to a statement released by Hamas.
The Palestine Liberation Organization also believes that the changes could be destabilizing for the region.
The measure "will contribute to further destabilization of the region and will discourage many of those who still believe that a peaceful solution can be reached to end more than 50 years of Israeli occupation, 70 years of exile and decades of violations Systematic violence of Palestinian "national and human rights," said Saeb Erekat, secretary general of the PLO and former chief negotiator in the peace talks.
Abbas has made phone calls to other Arab leaders, French President Emmanuel Macron and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, according to Palestinian sources, who said that many in the region condemned the measure, as they did six months ago, before that Trump signed the Jerusalem resignation for the first time.
Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi tweeted Sunday night that he spoke with United States Secretary of State Rex Tillerson about the "dangerous consequences of recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel." Such a decision would unleash anger in #Arab #Muslim worlds, fuel tension and endanger peace efforts. "
He spoke with <a href = "He spoke with #US Secretary of State Tillerson about the dangerous consequences of recognizing Jerusalem as Israel's capital, such a decision would unleash anger in # Arabic #Muslim worlds, fuel tension and compromised peace efforts.
– Ayman Safadi (@AymanHsafadi) December 3, 2017
The leader of the Arab League Abul Gheit said to journalists in Cairo on Sunday. " It is unfortunate that some insist on carrying out this step without taking into account the dangers that this entails for the stability of the Middle East and the whole world. "
"Nothing justifies this act," he added. "It will not serve peace or stability, but it will fuel fanaticism and violence."
Chris Donovan, Katherine Faulders, Conor Finnegan, Alex Mallin contributed reports from Washington, and Nbader Atta contributed to the Jerusalem reports.