Trump cancels visit to ancient site after Israel bars helicopter landing: report


President Trump is canceling a planned speech at an ancient mountain fortress in Israel, according to a new report.

Trump will no longer visit Masada on Monday after authorities told him that he could not land his helicopter there, Newsweek reported, citing Israel’s Channel 2.

Trump reportedly declined to land the helicopter at the base of the historic site and then take the cable car up, as former Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush did on previous visits.

Newsweek reported that Trump now plans on speaking Monday at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem.

{mosads}The Israeli Air Force (IAF) has a regulation that prohibits helicopters from landing at the summit of Masada.

Approaching helicopters create dust, making landing at the desert site, which is 1,300 feet above sea level, precarious.

An IAF landing at Masada in 1997 generated enough wind to damage the ruins, according to The Jerusalem Post.

Masada is a UNESCO World Heritage Site that sits upon a mountain in the Judean Desert.

UNESCO calls the fortress, which is about 60 miles southeast of Jerusalem, a “majestic beauty.”

Trump’s stop in Israel is part of his first foreign trip as president, which includes visits to Saudi Arabia and the Vatican, as he visits the centers of three major world religions.

The New York Times on Wednesday reported that Trump asked for the trek to be shortened from nine to five days.

Trump reportedly “expressed dread” about the trip’s length.

Tags Bill Clinton Diplomacy Foreign policy history Israel Politics UNESCO

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