Donald Trump has said that if Israel and the Palestinians could forge peace, it would spill over across the wider region.

Mr Trump, speaking alongside Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in Bethlehem, said he hoped the US could help both parties work out their long-standing differences.

The US president said he is “truly hopeful that America can help Israel and the Palestinians forge peace and bring new hope to the region and its people”.

“If Israeli and the Palestinians can make peace, it will begin a process of peace all throughout the Middle East.

“That would be an amazing accomplishment.”

Mr Abbas said the conflict with Israel is not of a religious nature, adding: “Our main problem is with the occupation and settlements.”

He called on Israel to accept demands for better conditions by hundreds of imprisoned Palestinians who have been on a hunger strike for 37 days.