16:38 GMT +325 March 2019
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    U.S. President Donald Trump is seen on screen as he delivers his speech during the opening ceremony of the new U.S. embassy in Jerusalem, Monday, May 14, 2018

    US to Combine Jerusalem Consulate with Embassy in March - State Department

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    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - The United States will go ahead with its plans to combine its Embassy and Consulate in Jerusalem in March, State Department spokesperson confirmed to Sputnik on Tuesday.

    "I can confirm it," the spokesperson said when asked to confirm reports that the change would go into effect in March.

    Secretary of State Michael Pompeo announced last October that the US would combine its Embassy and Consulate General in Jerusalem into one diplomatic mission to boost its efficiency.

    US relations with the Palestinian Authority have traditionally been conducted through the Consulate General in Jerusalem, making the mission a de facto embassy for Palestine, which the United States has not yet officially recognized as a state.

    READ MORE: Turkish Foreign Minister Calls Relocation of US Embassy to Jerusalem Provocation

    Pompeo said the United States would continue to do full range of reporting, outreach and programming both in the West Bank, Gaza and with Palestinians in Jerusalem via a new Palestinian Affairs Unit inside the Jerusalem Embassy, which will be overseen by the US ambassador to Israel.

    US President Donald Trump relocated the embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem in May 2018.

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