WASHINGTON — Donald Trump “discussed at length Israel’s successful experience with a security fence that helped secure its borders” during a meeting Sunday with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Trump’s campaign said.
Trump’s proposal to build a wall on the U.S. border with Mexico to confront illegal immigration has become a cornerstone of his campaign, although a statement issued by his campaign did not say whether he drew direct parallels with Israel’s border fence, which is meant to combat terrorism.
Trump also “acknowledged that Jerusalem has been the eternal capital of the Jewish People for over 3,000 years, and that the United States, under a Trump administration, will finally accept the long-standing congressional mandate to recognize Jerusalem as the undivided capital of the state of Israel,” his campaign said.
Palestinians claim all of east Jerusalem, including the Old City’s holy places, for the capital of a future state, while the current Israeli government says the city is its capital and won’t cede any of its eastern sector, which was annexed after the 1967 Six Day War. The annexation was not internationally recognized, and the U.S. and most other countries maintain embassies instead in Tel Aviv.
Trump said “peace will only come when the Palestinians renounce hatred and violence and accept Israel as a Jewish state,” his campaign said. He and Netanyahu also discussed U.S. military assistance to Israel, regional stability, and the country’s technology sector. They also talked about the Iran nuclear deal, which both oppose.
The meeting was held at Trump’s residence at Trump Tower in New York.
Hillary Clinton had arrived Sunday in New York to meet with Netanyahu as well.
The Trump campaign did not say whether the two discussed a ban on Muslim immigration that Trump has proposed and which Netanyahu has criticized, or the issue of profiling as a way to counterterrorism.
In response to a bombing in New York on Sept. 17 that injured at least 29 people, Trump cited the example of Israel. “In Israel they profile,” Trump said on Fox News. “They’ve done an unbelievable job, as good as you can do.”
A brief statement from the Netanyahu’s office said the two discussed “issues relating to Israel’s security and its efforts to achieve stability and peace in the Middle East.”
“Prime Minister Netanyahu thanked Mr. Trump for his friendship and support for Israel,” according to the statement.
Israel’s ambassador to the U.S., Ron Dermer, and Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner, who has advised the candidate on issues relating to Jewish voters, were also present at the meeting, according to a statement from Netanyahu’s office.
Bloomberg writers David Wainer and Jennifer Jacobs contributed to this report.
Distributed by Tribune Content Agency LLC.