U.S. Vice President Mike Pence began a visit to Israel on Sunday after being praised as a "great friend" by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and shunned by Palestine and the international community over U.S. recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital.
Pence was welcomed at Tel Aviv's Ben-Gurion Airport by Israel's tourism minister and made no statement to reporters before traveling to Jerusalem.
It is the highest-level U.S. visit to the region since President Donald Trump made his declaration on Dec. 6 and promised to begin the process of moving the American embassy to the city, whose status is at the heart of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Pence's trip to the region was delayed for over a month as the U.S. decision on Jerusalem stirred widespread unrest and drew condemnation from regional leaders.
In December, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Egypt's leading Muslim and Christian clerics canceled meetings with Pence over the Jerusalem decision.
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