Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday said that the U.S. will move its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem within a year.
The prime minister’s timeline drastically differs from that offered earlier by White House officials, who said the move would take at least three to four years due to stringent security measures and other requirements.
Netanyahu made this known to Israeli reporters on a flight from Dehli to Gujarat during a state visit to India, the Times of Israel reported.
A spokesman for the prime minster confirmed the content.
“My confident assessment is that it will move much faster than people think, within a year from today,” Netanyahu said, according to the Times of Israel.
President Donald Trump recognised Jerusalem as Israel’s capital on Dec. 6 and initiated a process to move the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem.
Israel occupied the eastern half of Jerusalem in 1967 and later annexed the territory in a move that was not internationally recognised.
Israel has long claimed that Jerusalem as its “undivided capital,” while the Palestinians want East Jerusalem as the capital of their future state.
Trump’s controversial decision sparked protests in some countries and was rejected in a non-binding UN General Assembly resolution.
The recognition was welcomed in Israel, and Guatemala has since announced it will follow the U.S. in moving its embassy to the city.
Arab foreign ministers are set to meet on Feb. 1 in Cairo to discuss steps against Trump’s recognition, the Arab League had earlier said.