US President Donald Trump vowed to do everything he can to achieve a peace agreement between the Israelis and Palestinians after meeting President Mahmoud Abbas on Tuesday in Bethlehem in the occupied West Bank.
"I am committed to trying to achieve a peace agreement between the Israelis and the Palestinians, and I intend to do everything I can to help them achieve that goal," Trump said.
Abbas said the Palestinians "are committed to working with you to reach a historic peace deal between us and Israel."
Establishment of the Palestinian state
Abbas said he was ready to be Trump’s partner in trying to reach a Middle East deal that would establish a Palestinian state on lands Israel captured half-a-century ago.
The Palestinian president also complained about the illegal settlement activity of Israel in the West Bank, saying the conflict with Israel is not of a religious nature. He says that "our main problem is with the occupation and settlements."
Abbas called on Israel to accept the demands for better conditions by hundreds of imprisoned Palestinians who have been on a hunger strike for 37 days.
Later during the day, Trump returned to Jerusalem to visit the Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial where a ceremony took place in the Hall of Remembrance to commemorate the six million Jewish victims of the Holocaust.
Trump's visit to Israel and the Palestinian territories is part of his first trip abroad as president. It follows an initial leg in Saudi Arabia, where he urged Arab and Islamic leaders to unite and do their share to defeat extremism and terrorism, while singling out Iran as a key source of funding and support for militant groups.
Rome is Trump's next stop where he will meet the Catholic Church's Pope Francis.