(JNS) The United States is ready to recognize Israeli sovereignty over the Jordan Valley and Israeli settlements in Judea and Samaria in the coming weeks, said U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman.
In a special interview with Israel Hayom on the occasion of the two-year anniversary of the relocation of the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, Friedman explained that several processes must be completed prior to this move, the timetable for which he said depended mainly on Israel. He emphasized that Washington does not plan to impose any new conditions for the move.
He said that when the process of mapping the area is completed, the Israeli government agrees to halt settlement construction in the part of Area C that will be excluded from the annexation plan, and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu agrees to negotiate with the Palestinians on the basis of the Trump administration’s Middle East peace plan—which he already has; the United States will then recognize Israel’s sovereignty in areas outlined in the plan.
Friedman stressed that the key element is that Israel has to be the one to make the move. It’s not the United States that is declaring sovereignty but the Israeli government, he said, and once it does the United States is ready to recognize it.