US President Donald Trump is to host Israeli leaders in Washington to discuss his long-awaited Middle East peace plan within days, amid Palestinian rejection for the proposal.
Trump announced that he will reveal details of his peace plan before meeting Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his rival in Israeli elections, Benny Gantz, on Tuesday. However, Palestinians warned on Friday that no deal could work without them on board.
The Palestinian Authority boycotted political talks with Washington, since the US recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and the relocation of the US embassy there.
Nabil Abu Rudeineh, spokesperson for Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, said last Friday that there had been no communication with the Trump administration.
He added that the Palestinian leadership had “a clear and unwavering position” to reject any Trump-led initiatives, and no peace deal could be implemented without “the approval of the Palestinian people and leadership.”
Media reports indicated that the plan may allow Israel to permanently control Palestinian territory. Rudeinah warned “Israel and the American administration against crossing the red lines.”
Trump had acknowledged that the Palestinians might react negatively to the plan at first, explaining that the plan is positive for the Palestinians, describing it as “a great plan. It’s a plan that really would work.”
Although Trump confirmed that he had spoken “briefly” to Palestinian leaders, the Palestinian president’s office denied they had spoken to Trump.
In unconfirmed reports, some Israeli media quoted unnamed Israeli officials saying that the plan would be extremely favourable to Israel, annexing much of the Palestinian territories, including Jewish settlements, and all of contested Jerusalem. The Palestinians may be granted some form of self-rule but under tight restrictions.
Hamas movement which is now ruling Gaza, said that no US plan could alter realities on the ground. Referring to US peace plan, Fawzi Barhoum, spokesperson for Hamas, warned that Palestinians would not accept it, and would confront it with all their might.