Trump and Abbas vow 'historic' peace deal

President Donald Trump said Wednesday an Israeli-Palestinian peace deal might not be as hard as people have thought, called on Congress to extend school choice to "millions more children" and was set to have dinner with religious leaders in the evening.

Speaking after the face-to-face meeting with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas at the White House on Wednesday, Trump said he is committed to working with Israel and the Palestinians to reach an agreement.

Trump began his remarks with a reminder that Abbas had been in attendance when the PLO leader Yasser Arafat and the Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin signed their 1994 agreement in the White House Rose Garden.

Trump noted that over the course of his life he'd heard "that perhaps the toughest deal to make" is the one between Israel and Palestine.

Trump urged Netanyahu to "hold back on settlements for a little bit", and while he said he'd "love" to see the U.S. embassy move to Jerusalem, he offered no indication it would happen soon.

The US president also said he believes the Israelis and Palestinians are both willing "to make a deal".

Qadoura Fares, head of a Palestinian prisoners rights group, told the gathering that Israel had to negotiate with the leaders of the strike and accept their demands. We believe you're willing.

On Wednesday, Trump hosted Abbas at the White House, and pledged to move forward. He also called on Israel to end its occupation of the West Bank, which Palestinians want as the foundation of a future state.

But on Wednesday, Abbas made one thing clear - he is not equally content with a one- or two-state solution.

Lerman said that Trump is not "in the business of imposing parameters". And if you believe the Times of Israel's founding editor David Horovitz, you will think it all went down so well for Abbas, that Israeli PM Binyamin Netanyahu will have some very sleepless nights.

President Trump emphasized his commitment to end the long-standing Israeli-Palestinian conflict, saying there's a "very good chance" for a peace deal and vowing to do "whatever is necessary to facilitate the agreement". It was part of the vigorous dose of optimism on display as Trump and Abbas showered each other with praise. Every US president has signed such a waiver twice a year after a law was passed in 1995 mandating the relocation of the embassy unless the White House certifies doing so would raise national security concerns.

Abbas reasserted the goal of a Palestinian state, saying it must have East Jerusalem as its capital with the borders that existed before the 1967 Middle East war.

Netanyahu and his people still aren't sure what Trump wants to do and what his strategy is on the Israeli-Palestinian issue.

Abbas, who governs in the West Bank while Hamas militants rule Gaza, was under pressure at home to avoid making major concessions to Trump.

  • Leroy Wright