Israel wants to build 'Trump station' near Western Wall

JERUSALEM, Dec 27 (Reuters) - Israel wants to name a train station after Donald Trump to thank him for recognizing Jerusalem as its capital, but the site of the planned building could be as divisive as the U.S. president's declaration.

Transport Minister Israel Katz said on Wednesday he had chosen a proposed subway stop near the Western Wall in Jerusalem's Old City - right in the middle of the area that the Palestinians want as their own future capital.

"I have decided to name the Western Wall station ... after U.S. President Donald Trump for his courageous and historic decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of the Jewish people and the State of Israel," Katz said in a statement.

The envisaged underground extension of a high-speed rail link between Tel Aviv and Jerusalem is still on the drawing board and a transport ministry spokeswoman said other departments still needed to approve it.

RELATED: A look at the Western Wall

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Western Wall in the Old City of Jerusalem
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Western Wall in the Old City of Jerusalem
JERUSALEM, Oct. 6, 2016 -- Jewish worshippers take part in Slichot, a prayer in which Jews offer repentance and ask God for forgiveness, at the Western Wall in Jerusalem's Old City, Oct. 6, 2016. (Xinhua/Gil Cohen Magen via Getty Images)
Ultra Orthodox Jewish boys are seen during a ceremony at the Western Wall, Judaism's holiest prayer site in Jerusalem's Old City March 29, 2017. REUTERS/Baz Ratner
David Friedman, new United States Ambassador to Israel, kisses the Western Wall after arriving in the Jewish state on Monday and immediately paying a visit to the main Jewish holy site, in Jerusalem's Old City May 15, 2017 REUTERS/Ammar Awad TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Notes are seen placed in the cracks of the Western Wall, Judaism's holiest prayer site, as people clear space for new notes ahead of the Jewish holiday of Passover, in Jerusalem's Old City March 29, 2017. REUTERS/Baz Ratner
Jewish people wearing 'Talit' (prayer shawls) take part in the Cohanim prayer (priest's blessing) during the Passover (Pesach) holiday at the Western Wall in the Old City of Jerusalem, on April 13, 2017. Thousands of Jews make the pilgrimage to Jerusalem during the eight-day Pesach holiday, which commemorates the Israelites' exodus from slavery in Egypt some 3,500 years ago and their plight by refraining from eating leavened food products. / AFP PHOTO / MENAHEM KAHANA (Photo credit should read MENAHEM KAHANA/AFP/Getty Images)
Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, touches the Western Wall as he stands next to Britain's Chief Rabbi, Ephraim Mirvis during their visit to the Western Wall, in Jerusalem's Old City May 3, 2017. REUTERS/Ronen Zvulun TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
An ultra-Orthodox Jewish boy stands beneath Jewish prayer shawls during the priestly blessing prayer on the holiday of Passover at the Western Wall in Jerusalem's Old City April 13, 2017. REUTERS/Amir Cohen TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
David Friedman, new United States Ambassador to Israel visits the Western Wall after arriving in the Jewish state on Monday and immediately paying a visit to the main Jewish holy site, in Jerusalem's Old City May 15, 2017 REUTERS/Ammar Awad
People release balloons as they celebrate a Bar Mitzvah, a traditional Jewish coming of age ceremony, as the Western Wall (right-hand corner) and the Dome of the Rock are seen in the background, in Jerusalem's Old City February 20, 2017. Picture taken February 20, 2017. REUTERS/Ronen Zvulun
Men clear notes placed in the cracks of the Western Wall, Judaism's holiest prayer site, to clear space for new notes ahead of the Jewish holiday of Passover, in Jerusalem's Old City March 29, 2017. REUTERS/Baz Ratner TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Jewish worshippers are seen from above during the priestly blessing prayer on the holiday of Passover, at the Western Wall in Jerusalem's Old City April 13, 2017. REUTERS/Amir Cohen
An ultra-Orthodox Jewish worshipper prays at the Western Wall in Jerusalem's Old City on Tisha B'Av, August 14, 2016. Tisha B'Av, a day of fasting and lament, commemorates the date in the Jewish calendar on which it is believed that First and Second Temples were destroyed in Jerusalem. REUTERS/Ronen Zvulun
Ultra-Orthodox Jewish worshippers pray at the Western Wall in Jerusalem's Old City on Tisha B'Av, August 14, 2016. Tisha B'Av, a day of fasting and lament, commemorates the date in the Jewish calendar on which it is believed that First and Second Temples were destroyed in Jerusalem. REUTERS/Ronen Zvulun
Jewish people take part in the Cohanim prayer (priest's blessing) during the Passover (Pesach) holiday at the Western Wall in the Old City of Jerusalem on April 13, 2017, with the Dome of the Rock seen in the background. Thousands of Jews make the pilgrimage to Jerusalem during the eight-day Pesach holiday, which commemorates the Israelites' exodus from slavery in Egypt some 3,500 years ago and their plight by refraining from eating leavened food products / AFP PHOTO / Thomas COEX (Photo credit should read THOMAS COEX/AFP/Getty Images)
An aerial view shows the Dome of the Rock (R) on the compound known to Muslims as the Noble Sanctuary and to Jews as Temple Mount, and the Western Wall (L) in Jerusalem's Old City October 10, 2006. REUTERS/Eliana Aponte/File Photo
JERUSALEM, ISRAEL - JANUARY 17: People pray at the Western Wall in the Old City on January 17, 2017 in Jerusalem, Israel. 70 countries attended the recent Paris Peace Summit and called on Israel and Palestinians to resume negotiations that would lead to a two-state solution, however the recent proposal by U.S President-elect Donald Trump to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem and last month's U.N. Security Council resolution condemning Jewish settlement activity in the West Bank have contributed to continued uncertainty across the region. The ancient city of Jerusalem where Jews, Christians and Muslims have lived side by side for thousands of years and is home to the Al Aqsa Mosque compound or for Jews The Temple Mount, continues to be a focus as both Israelis and Palestinians claim the city as their capital. The Israeli-Palestinian conflict has continued since 1947 when Resolution 181 was passed by the United Nations, dividing Palestinian territories into Jewish and Arab states. The Israeli settlement program has continued to cause tension as new settlements continue to encroach on land within the Palestinian territories. The remaining Palestinian territory is made up of the West Bank and the Gaza strip. (Photo by Chris McGrath/Getty Images)
Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev touches the Western Wall, the holiest site where Jews can pray in Jerusalem's Old City in Jerusalem, on November 10, 2016. / AFP / POOL / Dan Balilty (Photo credit should read DAN BALILTY/AFP/Getty Images)
A Western Wall employee removes messages and prayers, written on pieces of paper by thousands of people 'addressed to God', from the cracks of the Jewish holy site in Jerusalem's Old City on September 27, 2016, in preparation for the upcoming Jewish holiday of Rosh Hashana (New Year prayer). The feast that begins on October 2 marks the start of the 5777 year since the creation of the world according to the Jewish calendar. / AFP / MENAHEM KAHANA (Photo credit should read MENAHEM KAHANA/AFP/Getty Images)
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio places a note in the Western Wall during a visit in Jerusalem's Old City October 18, 2015. REUTERS/Amir Cohen
Jewish worshippers are seen from above during the priestly blessing prayer on the holiday of Passover, at the Western Wall in Jerusalem's Old City April 13, 2017. REUTERS/Amir Cohen TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu touches the Western Wall, Judaism's holiest prayer site, during a visit in Jerusalem's Old City February 28, 2015. REUTERS/Marc Sellem/Pool (JERUSALEM - Tags: POLITICS RELIGION TRAVEL TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY)
Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu stands next to the Western Wall, Judaism's holiest prayer site, during a visit in Jerusalem's Old City February 28, 2015. REUTERS/Marc Sellem/Pool (JERUSALEM - Tags: POLITICS RELIGION TRAVEL)
Pope Francis touches the stones of the Western Wall, Judaism's holiest prayer site, in Jerusalem's Old City May 26, 2014. Pope Francis, at the request of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, visited on Monday Israel's "Memorial to the Victims of Terror", a day after praying at an Israeli security wall abhorred by Palestinians. REUTERS/Andrew Medichini/Pool (JERUSALEM - Tags: POLITICS RELIGION)
Pope Francis and the Rabbi of the Western Wall Shmuel Rabinovitch walk towards the Western Wall, Judaism's holiest prayer site, in Jerusalem's Old City May 26, 2014. Pope Francis, at the request of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, visited on Monday Israel's "Memorial to the Victims of Terror", a day after praying at an Israeli security wall abhorred by Palestinians. REUTERS/Andrew Medichini/Pool (JERUSALEM - Tags: POLITICS RELIGION)
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The announcement was quickly condemned by Palestinian leaders already angered by Trump's Dec. 6 decision to overturn decades of U.S. policy on the city.

"The Israeli extremist government is trying to race against time to impose facts on the ground in the city of Jerusalem," Wasel Abu Youssef, a member of the Palestine Liberation Organization's Executive Committee, told Reuters.

Trump has said he was simply acknowledged the reality on the ground by recognizing Jerusalem as Israel's capital - but the Palestinians and most world powers have said he undermined the long-held position that Jerusalem's status must be settled by future negotiations.

A ministry spokeswoman said the proposed station and underground extension still required the approval of various governmental planning committees, and gave no date for when a final go-ahead might be given. She said she did not know where funds for the estimated $700-million rail add-on would come from.

Israel considers all of Jerusalem its capital. Palestinians want East Jerusalem - among whose shrines is Islam's third-holiest mosque, Al-Aqsa - as the capital of a state they seek in the occupied West Bank and in the Gaza Strip. (Additional reporting by Steven Scheer in Jerusalem and Ali Sawafta in Ramallah; Editing by Andrew Heavens)

RELATED: A look at President Trump's visit to Israel

55 PHOTOS
President Donald Trump visits Israel
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President Donald Trump visits Israel
US President Donald Trump visits the Western Wall, the holiest site where Jews can pray, in Jerusalems Old City on May 22, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / MANDEL NGAN (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)
U.S. President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump arrive aboard Air Force One at Ben Gurion International Airport in Lod near Tel Aviv, Israel May 22, 2017. REUTERS/Amir Cohen
U.S. President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump arrive aboard Air Force One at Ben Gurion International Airport in Lod near Tel Aviv, Israel May 22, 2017. REUTERS/Amir Cohen
U.S. President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump arrive aboard Air Force One at Ben Gurion International Airport in Lod near Tel Aviv, Israel May 22, 2017. REUTERS/Amir Cohen
US President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump arrive at Ben Gurion International Airport in Tel Aviv on May 22, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / MANDEL NGAN (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (L) and his wife Sara await U.S. President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump's arrival at Ben Gurion International Airport in Lod near Tel Aviv, Israel May 22, 2017. REUTERS/Amir Cohen
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (L), his wife Sara (2nd L) and David Friedman (3rd L), the new United States Ambassador to Israel, await U.S. President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump's arrival at Ben Gurion International Airport in Lod near Tel Aviv, Israel May 22, 2017. REUTERS/Amir Cohen
Members of honor guard in formation wait to begin the welcoming ceremony for U.S. President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump's departure from Air Force One at Ben Gurion International Airport in Lod near Tel Aviv, Israel May 22, 2017. REUTERS/Amir Cohen
Members of honor guard in formation wait to begin the welcoming ceremony for U.S. President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump's departure from Air Force One at Ben Gurion International Airport in Lod near Tel Aviv, Israel May 22, 2017. REUTERS/Amir Cohen
U.S. President Donald Trump (C) is greeted by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's wife Sara upon his arrival at Ben Gurion International Airport in Lod near Tel Aviv, Israel May 22, 2017. REUTERS/Amir Cohen
Israeli President Reuven Rivlin (L) welcomes US President Donald Trump (C) and First Lady Melania Trump (R) as they take part in a welcome ceremony upon their arrival at Ben Gurion International Airport in Tel Aviv on May 22, 2017, during part of his first trip overseas. / AFP PHOTO / MANDEL NGAN (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)
Israeli President Reuven Rivlin (L) welcomes US President Donald Trump (C) during a welcome ceremony upon his arrival at Ben Gurion International Airport in Tel Aviv on May 22, 2017, as part of his first trip overseas. / AFP PHOTO / Jack GUEZ (Photo credit should read JACK GUEZ/AFP/Getty Images)
U.S. President Donald Trump (2nd L) walks with Israel's President Reuven Rivlin (R) upon his arrival aboard Air Force One at Ben Gurion International Airport in Lod near Tel Aviv, Israel May 22, 2017. REUTERS/Amir Cohen
U.S. President Donald Trump (2nd L) and first lady Melania Trump (3rd L) walk with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (2nd R), his wife Sara (R) and David Friedman (Center back), the new United States Ambassador to Israel, upon their arrival at Ben Gurion International Airport in Lod near Tel Aviv, Israel May 22, 2017. REUTERS/Amir Cohen TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (R) and US President Donald Trump speak upon the latter's arrival at Ben Gurion International Airport in Tel Aviv on May 22, 2017, as part of his first trip overseas. / AFP PHOTO / Jack GUEZ (Photo credit should read JACK GUEZ/AFP/Getty Images)
U.S. President Donald Trump (C) sits next to Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (R) and Israel'sPresident Reuven Rivlin during a welcoming ceremony to welcome Trump at Ben Gurion International Airport in Lod near Tel Aviv, Israel May 22, 2017. REUTERS/Amir Cohen
U.S. President Donald Trump (C) shakes hands with Israel's President Reuven Rivlin as Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ( R) claps hands during a welcoming ceremony to welcome Trump at Ben Gurion International Airport in Lod near Tel Aviv, Israel May 22, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
US President Donald Trump speaks during a welcome ceremony upon his arrival at Ben Gurion International Airport in Tel Aviv on May 22, 2017, as part of his first trip overseas. / AFP PHOTO / MANDEL NGAN (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)
US President Donald Trump (C) gives a speech during a welcome ceremony upon his arrival at Ben Gurion International Airport in Tel Aviv on May 22, 2017, as part of his first trip overseas. / AFP PHOTO / MANDEL NGAN (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)
U.S. First Lady Melania Trump (seated, L) chats wife Sara Netanyahu (seated, front) as U.S. President Donald Trump (C) chats to Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (R) during a welcoming ceremony to welcome Trump at Ben Gurion International Airport in Lod near Tel Aviv, Israel May 22, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
U.S. President Donald Trump (6th R) shakes hands with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (5th R) upon his arrival at Ben Gurion International Airport in Lod near Tel Aviv, Israel May 22, 2017. REUTERS/Amir Cohen
U.S. first lady Melania Trump attends a welcoming ceremony upon her arrival together with U.S. President Donald Trump at Ben Gurion International Airport in Lod near Tel Aviv, Israel May 22, 2017. REUTERS/Amir Cohen
Members of the Israeli security forces patrol the area near the King David Hotel where U.S. President Donald Trump is expected to stay during his visit, in Jerusalem May 22, 2017. REUTERS/Avishag Shar-Yashuv
Ultra-Orthodox Jewish men walk on a pavement as members of the media and Israeli security forces work nearby, in the area near the King David Hotel where U.S. President Donald Trump is expected to stay during his visit, in Jerusalem May 22, 2017. REUTERS/Avishag Shar-Yashuv
Security guards patrol near Israeli and American flags as they wait for the expected arrival of U.S. President Donald Trump at Ben Gurion International Airport in Lod near Tel Aviv, Israel May 22, 2017. REUTERS/Amir Cohen
U.S. President Donald Trump (2ndL) looks at his wife Melania signing a guest book as Israeli President Reuven Rivlin (3rd L) and his wife Nechama (R) stand nearby at Rivlin's residence in Jerusalem May 22, 2017. REUTERS/Noam Moskowitz
U.S. President Donald Trump (2nd L) shakes hands, after signing the guest book, with Israeli President Reuven Rivlin (2nd R) with his wife Nechama Reuven (R) and first lady Melania Trump (L), in Jerusalem May 22, 2017. REUTERS/Noam Moskowitz
U.S. President Donald Trump (L) sits next to Israeli President Reuven Rivlin during their meeting in Jerusalem May 22, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
Israeli President Reuben Rivlin (L) gestures as he sits next to U.S. President Donald Trump during their meeting at Rivlin� residence in Jerusalem May 22, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
U.S. President Donald Trump (2nd L) signs the guest book, with first lady Melania Trump (L), Israeli President Reuven Rivlin (2nd R) his wife Nechama Reuven (R) in Jerusalem May 22, 2017. REUTERS/Noam Moskowitz
U.S. President Donald Trump gestures during his meeting with Israeli President Reuven Rivlin at Rivlin?s residence in Jerusalem May 22, 2017. REUTERS/Atef Safadi/Pool
U.S. President Donald Trump delivers a few remarks to reporters before his meeting with Israel� President Reuven Rivlin at Rivlin� residence in Jerusalem May 22, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
U.S. President Donald Trump ( L) stands on a podium next to Israeli President Reuven Rivlin, in Jerusalem May 22, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
U.S. President Donald Trump ( L) stands on a podium next to Israeli President Reuven Rivlin, in Jerusalem May 22, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
US President Donald Trump listens to Rabbi Shmuel Rabinovitch (C) during a visit to the Western Wall, the holiest site where Jews can pray, in Jerusalems Old City on May 22, 2017. On the left, Trump's son-in-law and senior advisor Jared Kushner. / AFP PHOTO / MANDEL NGAN (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)
U.S. President Donald Trump (C) stands next to Western Wall Rabbi Shmuel Rabinowitz at the plaza in front of the Western Wall, Judaism's holiest prayer site, in Jerusalem's Old City May 22, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
US President Donald Trump visits the Western Wall, the holiest site where Jews can pray, in Jerusalems Old City on May 22, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / MANDEL NGAN (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)
US President Donald Trump visits the Western Wall, the holiest site where Jews can pray, in Jerusalems Old City on May 22, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / POOL / RONEN ZVULUN (Photo credit should read RONEN ZVULUN/AFP/Getty Images)
Ivanka Trump, the daughter of US President Donald Trump, visits the Western Wall, the holiest site where Jews can pray, in Jerusalems Old City on May 22, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / POOL / RONEN ZVULUN (Photo credit should read RONEN ZVULUN/AFP/Getty Images)
Ivanka Trump (L), the daughter of US President Donald Trump, is seen during a visit to the Western Wall, the holiest site where Jews can pray, in Jerusalems Old City on May 22, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / POOL / RONEN ZVULUN (Photo credit should read RONEN ZVULUN/AFP/Getty Images)
Ivanka Trump, the daughter of US President Donald Trump, is seen during a visit to the Western Wall, the holiest site where Jews can pray, in Jerusalems Old City on May 22, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / MANDEL NGAN (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)
Ivanka Trump, the daughter of US President Donald Trump, visits the Western Wall, the holiest site where Jews can pray, in Jerusalems Old City on May 22, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / POOL / RONEN ZVULUN (Photo credit should read RONEN ZVULUN/AFP/Getty Images)
US President Donald Trump (C) and First Lady Melania Trump (L) tour the garden of the residency of Israel's President Reuven Rivlin (R) in Jerusalem on May 22, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / MANDEL NGAN (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)
U.S. President Donald Trump (C) stands next to Rabbi Shmuel Rabinowitz at the plaza in front of the Western Wall, Judaism's holiest prayer site, in Jerusalem's Old City May 22, 2017. REUTERS/Ronen Zvulun
U.S. President Donald Trump (2nd R) walks with Israel's President Reuven Rivlin (R) to review troops during a welcome ceremony at Ben Gurion International Airport in Tel Aviv, Israel May 22, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
U.S. President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump walk in a procession to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem May 22, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
U.S. President Donald Trump shakes hands with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas during their meeting at the presidential headquarters in the West Bank town of Bethlehem, May 23, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas extends his hand to shake hands with U.S. President Donald Trump during a joint news conference at the presidential headquarters in the West Bank town of Bethlehem, May 23, 2017. REUTERS/Mohamad Torokman
A still image taken from video shows U.S. President Donald Trump and first lady Melania attending a ceremony commemorating the six million Jews killed by the Nazis in the Holocaust, in the Hall of Remembrance at Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial in Jerusalem May 23, 2017. Government Press Office via REUTERS TV ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. IT IS DISTRIBUTED, EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY REUTERS, AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS.
Yad Vashem Chairman Avner Shalev presents U.S. President Donald Trump with a token of remembrance, an exact replica of the original Holocaust-era personal album that belonged to Ester Goldstein, who perished in the Holocaust, at Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial in Jerusalem May 23, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
U.S. President Donald Trump and first lady Melania lay a wreath during a ceremony commemorating the six million Jews killed by the Nazis in the Holocaust, in the Hall of Remembrance at Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial in Jerusalem May 23, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
U.S. President Donald Trump holds the hand of Holocaust survivor Margot Goldstein, as first lady Melania Trump walks towards them, at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem May 23, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
U.S. President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump participate in a wreath-laying at the Yad Vashem holocaust memorial in Jerusalem May 23, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
U.S. President Donald Trump and first lady Melania wave as they board Air Force One to travel to Rome from Ben Gurion International Airport near Tel Aviv, Israel May 23, 2017. REUTERS/
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