It's a way to thank Trump for recognizing Jerusalem as Israel's capital
Trump's decision was rejected by the vast majority of UN countries
The Old City is the most sensitive point in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict
A planned high-speed rail station in the Old City of Jerusalem will be named after President Donald Trump, Israeli Minister of Transportation Yisrael Katz told CNN.
The station, which will be built inside the walls of the Old City, will drop off passengers near the Dung Gate, which leads straight to the Western Wall, the holiest site at which Jews can pray.
Trump made history in early May when he became the first sitting US president to visit the Western Wall, though he did so without any Israeli government officials, in apparent recognition of the sensitivity of his visit.
But dedicating the rail station to Trump is a way of thanking him for what he did earlier in December, when he recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and said he intends to move the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
“I decided to call the new train station which will be established in the Jewish Quarter near the Western Wall and the Temple Mount in the name of President Donald Trump, because of his historical and brave decision to recognize Jerusalem, the eternal capital of the Jewish people, as the capital of the state of Israel and his intention to move the American Embassy to Jerusalem,” said Katz.
Trump’s decision was hailed by Israelis, even as it was rejected by the vast majority of countries in the United Nations General Assembly.
The Old City of Jerusalem – together with the metropolis that surrounds it – is the most sensitive point in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, with both sides claiming all or part of the city as their capital.
In addition to the station, Trump-naming frenzy has swept across Jerusalem and Israel, where multiple municipal projects are expected to bear the name of the 45th President.
A Jerusalem city council member proposed changing the name of Salah ad-Din Street – a largely Palestinian street that leads into the Old City’s Muslim Quarter – to Donald Trump Street. In a letter addressed to the deputy mayor, Councilman Arieh King wrote, “Thanks to his action, other nations intend to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of the State of Israel and work to transfer their embassies to our city.”
In nothern Israel, Kiryat Yam Mayor David Even Tzur plans on naming the city’s new park after Trump. Tzur even suggested he would consider inviting Trump to the opening of the park in April 2018. He received a thank you letter from Trump, which said, “I am thankful for your gesture and am moved to know that the people of Israel are encouraged by my decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.”
A council resolution in the coastal city of Ashkelon would name a road “Trump Declaration Street,” echoing the title of the “Balfour Declaration” of 1917, in which the British government committed to a Jewish home in British-mandatory Palestine.
Reviled by Palestinians, it is considered one of the most significant documents leading to the creation of the state of Israel. Rabbi Yakov Avitan, an Ashkelon council member, said he believes Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel is equally as important.