President Trump became the first sitting U.S. president to visit the Western Wall on Monday, spending a solemn moment in prayer before slipping a note inside.
American representatives had reportedly told Israeli officials not to join them at the wall: "This is in the West Bank. It is a private visit by the president, and it's not your business," Israeli TV reports a U.S. representative as saying. While Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu did not accompany Trump, first lady Melania Trump; his visibly moved daughter, Ivanka Trump; and his son-in-law, Jared Kushner, joined the president on his visit.
The Western Wall, one of the holiest sites in both Judaism and Islam, is not officially recognized by the U.S. as being part of Israel. The Trump administration has refused to take a clear stance on the issue, with National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster declining to take a position and White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer saying the wall is "clearly in Jerusalem," a fact that is not in dispute. U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley has said that while she doesn't know "the policy of the administration" she is a part of, "I believe the Western Wall is part of Israel."
Watch Trump's historic visit below. Jeva Lange