Jared Kushner, US President Donald Trump’s senior adviser, said Washington would likely announce its Middle East peace plan even if Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, angered by US policy so far, chose to remain on the sidelines.
In an interview that appeared in Arabic on Sunday in the Palestinian newspaper Al Quds, Kushner � who is meeting leaders in the region, but not Abbas � questioned his ability to make a deal and said the US proposal would be published soon.
Abbas has refused to see Trump’s team following his decision in December to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and to move the US Embassy there. The Palestinians want their own future state with a capital in East Jerusalem.
Kushner, who along with US envoy Jason Greenblatt, visited Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Egypt before talks on Friday and Saturday with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, said Arab leaders conveyed they wanted to see a Palestinian state.
The Trump administration has said it would support a two-state solution if both sides agree to it, but in the interview, Kushner did not commit to Palestinian statehood, long the foundation of US policy in the region.
The plan is expected to propose detailed solutions to core issues in dispute between the Israelis and Palestinians, such as borders, the future of Israeli settlements, the fate of Palestinian refugees and security.
Israel captured the West Bank, East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip in the 1967 war. Israeli forces and settlers pulled out of the Gaza Strip, now controlled by Hamas, in 2005.
Most experts question whether Kushner, who is married to Trump’s daughter, Ivanka, and Greenblatt � both of whom have no diplomatic background � can achieve any deal in one of the world’s most intractable conflicts.
In the interview, which was headlined, I am ready to work with President Abbas if he wishes and published in Arabic, Kushner gave a direct message to the Palestinian people:
Source: Palestine Chronicle