The U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem will cost an additional $21 million to renovate, far more than the initial cost of $250,000 touted by President Donald Trump earlier this year.
ABC News cited a government filing as saying a company based in Maryland — Desbuild Limak D&K JV LLC — was awarded a $21,182,581 contract to "design/build services for phase 2 — building addition and compound security upgrades at the U.S. Embassy Jerusalem Arnona."
According to Bloomberg, Desbuild Limak D&K JV was founded in 2016 and specializes in masonry and stonework services.
The Trump administration moved the U.S. Embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem in May. The move was controversial because it sent a signal the U.S. recognizes Jerusalem as Israel's capital, a disputed fact because both Israel and the Palestinian Authority claim the holy city is their capital.
Trump said in March the Jerusalem Embassy would cost $250,000, far less than the $1 billion price tag he was initially given. NPR scrutinized the statement, however, and concluded the smaller figure was referring to the initial cost to set up the embassy in an existing consular building. The $1 billion figure was likely referring to constructing a brand new facility from scratch.
Further, a State Department official confirmed to ABC News on Tuesday that Trump's initial price was only for the first phase of the embassy project.
The embassy opened its doors for business with a staff of 50 employees.
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