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Trump to visit Israel, the Vatican and Saudi Arabia

Trump to visit Israel, the Vatican and Saudi Arabiaā€¯

Reuters reported on Thursday that the US President will travel to Saudi Arabia and Israel, as well as the Vatican when he journeys overseas for the first time as POTUS.

The official said that while "conventional wisdom" would tell you that Trump is "weak on alliances", the president is in fact "strong on alliance", provided allies pay their fair share toward defense.

Trump has already held meetings with high ranking officials from both countries since taking office.

From Saudi Arabia, Mr Trump will travel to Israel - leaving open the possibility of an additional stop in the West Bank.

Trump has asked Israel to limit its building of Jewish settlements on land the Palestinians want for a state.

Trump, joining religious leaders in the Rose Garden on Thursday, said his first foreign trip would "begin with a truly historic gathering in Saudi Arabia with leaders all across the Muslim world".

"Whether he can or can't" achieve what others could not, "it's our job to try", one official said. "And so do we", Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir said in a meeting with reporters Thursday in Washington.

A senior administration official said the planning started shortly after the elections after being approached by Saudi Arabia wanting to reset warm relations with the U.S. Administration. "Catholic advisers of Donald Trump, who want to resurrect the imagery of a civilizational conflict between Christianity and Islam", he said.

In Rome, the meeting with Francis on May 24 follows barbs traded between the pontiff and Trump during the presidential campaign.

Mr Trump retorted: "For a religious leader to question a person's faith is disgraceful".

Their relationship got off to a rocky start when, during the US presidential campaign, Francis famously said that anyone who wants to build a wall to keep out foreigners is "not Christian".

The second-to-last stop on the trip will be a day-long meeting with North Atlantic Treaty Organisation leaders in Brussels.

One senior White House official said Trump was invited by Saudi leadership specifically because of statements he has made about his desire to defeat Islamic extremism.



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