Will do everything to achieve Israel-Palestinian peace deal
- Author: Leroy Wright May 24, 2017,
May 24, 2017, 22:44
High-ranking PLFP member Kayid al-Ghoul told Ma'an that the Tuesday rally was staged to condemn Trump's policies towards Palestine, which were "predictably in support of Israel's conditions for the so-called peace process".
On Tuesday, US president Donald Trump and president of the Palestinian Authority Mahmoud Abbas asserted their commitment to achieving peace between Palestinians and Israelis, during a press conference in Bethlehem, according to global media.
A sign with "Resistance is not terrorism", written in both English and Arabic, and a picture of the U.S. president with a footprint on his face was also anchored to the truck. "But with determination, compromise, and the belief that peace is possible, Israelis and Palestinians can make a deal". "He wants peace", he said. "The president notably avoided all of the thorny issues that have stymied peace efforts for decades", The Associated Press noted. Further, the USA leader did not bring up the issue of sovereignty over the city of Jerusalem, which both Israel and the Palestinians claim as their capital.
Aides said the approach was purposeful, and Trump was well-aware of the risks of veering off script. And in a speech later at the Israel Museum, he reaffirmed that his administration would always stand with Israel. -Israeli relations - a point that was not lost on President Trump. He's taken a tougher line on settlements, saying he doesn't believe they help the peace process, though he's stopped short of calling for a full construction freeze.
Abbas' newfound willingness to cooperate can be seen as a response to Trump's strong rhetoric regarding his commitment to make what he has called "the ultimate deal" between the two historically hostile nations.
"In so doing we will all enjoy a safer and brighter future and a safer and brighter world", he said after holding talks with the Palestinian president in Bethlehem.
Abbas was keen to "keep the door open to dialogue with our Israeli neighbors". It also urges a "just settlement" of the Palestinian refugee problem.Netanyahu has expressed tentative support for parts of the initiative, but there are many caveats on the Israeli side, including how to resolve the ever more complex refugee issue and whether Israel would withdraw from the Golan Heights, strategic territory that Israel took from Syria in the 1967 war.
Trump arrived at the Presidential palace in Bethlehem in the morning after travelling there by vehicle from Jerusalem. They were joined by Netanyahu and his wife, Sara, as well as daughter Ivanka Trump and Kushner. Wearing a black skullcap, he became the first sitting president to visit the Western Wall in Jerusalem's Old City, the most holy site at which Jews can pray.
It is the first time a sitting United States president has visited and prayed at the site.
Tuesday marked the second day of Palestinian protests, which simultaneously condemned the U.S. president's visit and supported the hunger strikes in Israeli prisons. Trump himself never commented.
The White House did not answer the question.