Western Wall Train Station to Be Named after President Trump

Guatemala became the first nation to pledge to move its mission to Jerusalem since US President Donald Trump's December 6 recognition of the city as Israel's capital and instructions to move the American embassy from Tel Aviv.

The Palestinian foreign ministry on Monday slammed as "shameful" Guatemala's decision to transfer its embassy to Jerusalem after the United States recognised the city as the capital of Israel.

Israel's Transportation Minister Yisrael Katz on Wednesday announced that a train station set to be built adjacent to Jerusalem's Western Wall and will be named after United States President Donald Trump.

In May, Trump became the first sitting USA president to visit the Western Wall when he visited the site during a tour of several Middle East countries. The Western Wall is the holiest site where Jews can pray.

Katz said a high speed rail station would allow visitors to reach 'the beating heart of the Jewish people - the Western Wall and the Temple Mount'. Officials said, however, that the move will take years to complete.

Katz's office said the minister advanced the plan in a recent meeting with Israel Railways executives, and has fast-tracked it in the planning committees.

However, Israel's Ambassador to Guatemala, Mattanya Cohen, told local television that Guatemala would only move its embassy after the US, and that could take years, according to Haaretz.

Israel considers all of Jerusalem its capital.

A former president of Guatemala, Ramiro de Leon Carpio, who was in power 1993-1996, had made a decision to move the embassy to Jerusalem, but backtracked when Muslim-majority countries shut off access to Guatemalan goods.

The move comes after Trump unilaterally recognised Jerusalem as Israel's capital and has prompted global criticism and sparked protests across the world. One will be in an area of the Old City referred to as the Jewish Quarter.

She added: "What we are doing is returning our embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, where we had it for many years".

Previous excavations by Israel near the holy site - the spiritual epicenter of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict - have sparked violent Palestinian protests.

  • Jon Douglas