Trump administration gears up for Monday's opening of US embassy in Jerusalem

The Trump administration says at least 50 staffers will work inside the United States’ new embassy in Jerusalem when it officially opens on Monday.

Senior administration officials previewing its opening told reporters the embassy will begin with a 50-to-60 person operation and grow from there.

The new embassy in Jerusalem is opening Monday to coincide with the 70th anniversary of Israel declaring its independence.

President Trump formally recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s capital in December by directing the State Department to begin the move of the embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

According to Trump officials, roughly 800 guests will attend the opening on Monday.

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Initially, the embassy will consist of Ambassador David Friedman and a small team as well as U.S. consular officers already working at the site. The embassy is opening in part of a pre-existing American visa-and-passport facility with a fraction of the total U.S. personnel in Israel.

“We are excited about taking this historic step, and look forward with anticipation to the May opening,” State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said in February.

An official told Fox News that the hope is for the U.S. to develop only a “footprint” there in May, with a target of a fuller complement and facility by the end of next year.

Officials said there will a closed watch party on Monday in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building, just across from the West Wing at the White House, for White House employees to celebrate the opening.

Fox News’ Jennifer Bowman and Brooke Singman and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Alex Pappas is a politics reporter at FoxNews.com. Follow him on Twitter at @AlexPappas.