Trump says "we want Israel to have peace"

Last Updated May 22, 2017 2:41 PM EDT

 

 

President Trump and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu delivered remarks together on Monday from Netanyahu's residence in Jerusalem. 

While Mr. Trump admitted that Israeli-Palestinian peace is difficult to achieve, the president pledged to work toward it and expressed confidence that it would happen eventually. Netanyahu thanked Mr. Trump for a "change in American policy on Iran," though it's unclear what that means in terms of the Iranian nuclear deal. 

The president reiterated the U.S. commitment to Israel, saying, "We are more than friends -- we are great allies." 

During their meeting shortly before the remarks, Netanyahu praised the intelligence cooperation between Israel and the U.S. as "terrific."

This prompted Mr. Trump to say to the pool reporters covering the meeting, "Just so you understand, I never mentioned the word or the name Israel. Never mentioned it during that conversation. They were all saying I did. So you had another story wrong. Never mentioned the word Israel." 

Last week, the Washington Post reported that Mr. Trump had divulged classified material to Russia during his meeting with the Russian foreign minister and envoy. Subsequent reports noted that the information the president revealed came from Israel, but it had not been reported that Mr. Trump had mentioned Israel to Russia in relation to his claims.

Afterward, the two leaders are expected to have dinner together with their wives. The two leaders met earlier at the King David Hotel after Mr. Trump stopped by the Western Wall, becoming the first sitting U.S. president to visit Judaism's holiest site. 

Earlier in the day, Mr. Trump visited the Church of the Holy Sepulchre and met with Israeli President Reuven Rivlin. The president is scheduled to meet next with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and deliver remarks with him. 

Follow below for updates.


Trump said the U.S. wants Israel to have peace

The president said that the U.S. wants Israel to have peace and said, "We are more than friends -- we are great allies." The president pledged to work toward Israeli-Palestinian peace, which he said he has heard is the "toughest deal of all" and expressed confidence that it would eventually happen. 

Trump said he was "deeply moved" by visit to the Western Wall

The president said he's amazed by the monuments and holy sites he visited Monday, and by the generosity of the Israeli people. He said "words fail to capture the experience" of visiting the Western Wall. 

"It will leave an impression on me forever," he said. 

Netanyahu thanks Trump for conveying "change in American policy on Iran"

After engaging in a bilateral meeting, the prime minister said that the president annunciated a change in U.S. policy on Iran "so clearly" and he applauded Trump's decision to take "bold" action against the use of chemical weapons in Syria. It's unclear what he meant by a policy change. He said they are both committed to rolling back "Iran's march of aggression and terror" and preventing it from becoming a nuclear weapons state.

Netanyahu welcomes Trump to "eternal capital" of Jewish people

The prime minister said he and his wife are "absolutely delighted" to welcome Trump and first lady Melania Trump to the "eternal capital of the Jewish people, the united capital of the Jewish faith. Netanyahu said that Israelis applaud Trump for becoming the first sitting U.S. president for visiting the Western wall. 

  • Rebecca Shabad

    Rebecca Shabad is a video reporter for CBS News Digital.