U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo attends the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS Small Group Ministerial at the State Department in Washington, U.S., November 14, 2019. REUTERS/Yara Nardi
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is expected to announce on Monday the United States is softening its position on Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank, a Trump administration official said on Monday.
Pompeo is expected to say the administration of President Donald Trump will no longer abide by a 1978 State Department legal opinion that the settlements were “inconsistent with international law,” according to the official. The move is likely to be welcomed by right-wing Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and anger the Palestinians, as well as other countries seeking to resolve the Middle East conflict.
Reporting by Steve Holland and Matt Spetalnick; Editing by Lisa Lambert