Donald Trump was asked at a Republican Jewish Coalition forum last week whether he would recognize Jerusalem as the capital of the Jewish State and move the U.S. Embassy there.
“You know what I want to do? I want to wait till I meet with Bibi, you know, I’m leaving for Israel in a very short period of time,” he replied.
That meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is scheduled for Dec. 28.
After Trump’s comments this week about blocking all Muslims from entering the United States, the meeting is going forward as planned.
But Netanyahu’s office today issued a statement slamming the GOP presidential candidate’s proposal.
“Prime Minister Netanyahu rejects Donald Trump’s recent remarks about Muslims,” said Bibi’s office. “The State of Israel respects all religions and strictly guarantees the rights of all its citizens. At the same time, Israel is fighting against militant Islam that targets Muslims, Christians and Jews alike and threatens the entire world.”
“As for the meeting with Mr. Trump that was set some two weeks ago, the Prime Minister decided earlier this year on a uniform policy to agree to meet with all presidential candidates from either party who visit Israel and ask for a meeting.”
This policy, Netanyahu’s office stressed, “does not represent an endorsement of any candidate or his or her views.”
“Rather, it is an expression of the importance that Prime Minister Netanyahu attributes to the strong alliance between Israel and the United States.”
More than three dozen Knesset members have signed a petition asking Netanyahu to call off the Trump meeting.
“While leaders around the world are condemning the racist and outrageous remarks by the Republican presidential candidate, Netanyahu embraces him warmly,” MK Michal Rozin of the Meretz party said. “Their meeting at the end of the month lends support to [Trump’s] racist comments, and in this disgraces the democratic character of the State of Israel and hurts its Muslim citizens.”