Palestinians Challenge Trump on Two-State Solution Support

Palestinian officials rejected US President Donald Trump’s comments supporting a two-state solution for Palestinians and Israelis, saying American policies were destroying any hope for peace.

Trump made the statement during the annual United Nations General Assembly on Wednesday after meeting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. He said a two-state solution could resolve the decades-old Palestinian-Israeli conflict:

It was the first time since taking office that Trump endorsed a two-state solution as the best way to resolve the conflict.

Husam Zomlot, head of the recently closed Palestinian mission in Washington, DC, denounced the US president’s comments.

According to reports, the proposal prohibits the return of more than five million Palestinian refugees and removes the status of Jerusalem from negotiations.

Netanyahu said after meeting Trump he was not surprised at the US president’s preference for a two-state solution for peace, Israeli media reports said.

Last week, the US announced it was shutting down the Palestine Liberation Organization’s (PLO) diplomatic office in Washington over the Palestinian Authority’s refusal to enter into US-brokered negotiations with Israel.

The move came amid deteriorating ties between the two sides in the wake of Trump’s controversial recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital late last year and the relocation of its embassy there.

Nabil Abu Rudeineh, a spokesman for Palestinian Authority President Mahmud Abbas, told reporters in the occupied West Bank city of Ramallah that Trump needs to act on his statement.

He added Palestinians want to resolve all core issues of the conflict � which include borders, illegal settlements, refugees, security and the status of Jerusalem � according to United Nations resolutions.

Abbas will speak at the UN General Assembly on Thursday.

Trump said the embassy move to Jerusalem would actually help peace efforts, saying Israel would now have to make concessions to the Palestinians in any negotiations.

Source: Palestine Chronicle