Photo Credit: Kobi Gideon / GPO
US Secretary of Treasury Steve Mnuchin and Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem at the Prime Minister's Office, Oct. 26 2017

U.S. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin is expected to head the American delegation to the opening of the new U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem on May 14, according to an Axios report quoting Israeli officials who spoke with local journalist Barak Ravid of Channel 10 news.

Guatemala has already said it will follow suit two days later, transferring its embassy to Israel’s capital from Tel Aviv on May 16.

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The Prime Minister’s Office and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs are well into preparations for the event on May 14, which officials have said they believe will be followed by a similar move by other nations, several of whom are strongly considering a transfer for their embassies to Jerusalem as well.

In addition to Mnuchin, senior U.S. presidential adviser Jared Kushner, the president’s son-in-law, is also expected to attend, as will the president’s Special Representative for International Negotiations Jason Greenblatt, U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman and U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley. There are conflicting reports regarding to whether Kushner’s wife and presidential daughter, Ivanka Trump, will participate.

The U.S. delegation is expected to number approximately 250 VIPs, including some 40 members of the House of Representatives and Senate, and the heads of Jewish organizations and pro-Israel Christian organizations.

The new American embassy will temporarily be comprised of the Ambassador’s office and facilities for support staff, and will be housed in an upgraded and renovated version of the U.S. Consulate building in Jerusalem’s Arnona neighborhood. The facility that served as the embassy up to this point in Tel Aviv will continue to provide services, officials said, although the Ambassador will now be based in Jerusalem.

Eventually an entirely new Embassy will be built, but that is expected to take many years.

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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for Babble.com, Chabad.org and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.