President Trump faces pressure from one of his largest donors to deliver on his promise to move the U.S. embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem at the same time as he seeks to broker peace between the state and the Palestinians.
Israel's right-wing had placed high hopes in Trump's presidency following his pledges of ardent support for Israel and a commitment to move the embassy from Tel Aviv to the disputed city of Jerusalem.
Speaking to Meet the Press, Secretary Tillerson stated "The president is being very careful to understand how such a decision would impact the peace process".
Israel seized in 1967 the West Bank, East Jerusalem, and the Gaza Strip, where the Palestinians want to establish their future state.
Palestinians say moving the embassy would be a de facto recognition of Israel's control of all Jerusalem.
Those cautioning against the embassy move warn that such a decision could trigger uproar in the Palestinian territories and across the Arab world and add another obstacle in the already-complicated path to peace.
In 1980, Israel declared "reunited" Jerusalem its capital in a move unrecognised by major states.
This is published unedited from the IANS feed.
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"This is the clear and consistent position of Prime Minister Netanyahu, which he reiterated today", the statement concluded.
Former US presidents have repeatedly waived a US law requiring the embassy be moved to Jerusalem.
Israel angrily demanded an explanation from the White House, casting a cloud over the highly anticipated visit by the new president, which is being greeted with a mixture of excitement and nervousness by Israeli officials.
A diplomatic spat appeared to erupt between USA and Israeli officials over President Trump's visit to the Western Wall in Jerusalem's Old City just days before he's due in the region.
The most recent waiver signed by President Barack Obama expires June 1.
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas landed in New Delhi late Sunday for a three-day visit looking to strengthen ties with India ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's historic trip to Israel.
U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson delivers remarks to the employees at the State Department in Washington, U.S., May 3, 2017.
The Prime Minister's Office also released a summary of a meeting between Israeli Ambassador to the US Ron Dermer and National Security Advisor-designate Michael Flynn on 16 January.
Donald Trump seemed to understand this during the campaign, but now he apparently is getting caught up in the "peace process" chimera that has ensnared so many of his predecessors.