Published: Mon, February 12, 2018
Worldwide | By Gretchen Simon

Pres. Trump: Israel and Palestinians Hindering Middle East Peace Process

Pres. Trump: Israel and Palestinians Hindering Middle East Peace Process

Jerusalem is the capital of Israel, the Conservative foreign affairs critic Erin O'Toole said Saturday, marking the first time the federal opposition has taken a clear position on the issue since U.S. President Donald Trump announced in December he would move the American embassy to the disputed city. But when asked about the USA peace plan, he said, "Right now, I would say the Palestinians are not looking to make peace, they are not looking to make peace". The 92-page document discusses the United States strategy for Israeli-Palestinian peace, which, according to the document, will be announced within two to three months. "So we are just going to have to see what happens", Trump told Israel Hayom newspaper.

The Trump administration has claimed that Trump's declaration has made an Israeli-Palestinian peace deal more likely.

The remarks are consistent with the way Trump talked about settlements in a similar interview with Bismuth previous year. The UN voted overwhelmingly to condemn the decision.

Mr Trump's approach towards Israel has appeared to be more lenient than with the Palestinians, with whom he has tangled publicly since his recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital past year.

In accordance with existing agreements, the bulk of the Palestinian population of the West Bank live in the so-called Areas A and B, where the Palestinian National Authority (PNA) is responsible for providing all civilian services.

With relations between Washington and Moscow at a record low since the end of the Cold War era, Mr Abbas may be expecting that "Russia-US relations will get even worse and then Russia could do something to spite the US", Mr Shumilin said.

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All rounds of talks between Israelis and Palestinians have stalled so far mainly due to the Tel Aviv regime's refusal to stop its unlawful settlement expansion on the occupied territories. Since then he has cut USA funding to a United Nations agency that assists Palestinian refugees and threatened to withhold aid money to the Palestinians unless they resume negotiations with Israel.

"You can support an ultimate two state solution while also recognizing that Jerusalem will be the capital of Israel", said O'Toole, noting that Canada needs to have a larger presence on the ground.

The settlements are considered illegal under worldwide law, though Israel disputes this. "We will see what happens, but I think it is very foolish for the Palestinians and I also think it would be very foolish for the Israelis if they don't make a deal", Trump said. "Not only is Jerusalem obviously and objectively the capital of the state of Israel since its creation over 60 years ago but it is the ancient capital of the Jewish peoples", Kenney said.

"Russia and Putin can play an important role within the frame of an global forum for peace", said Majdi al-Khalidi, diplomatic adviser to Abbas.

"For the 70th anniversary of the State of Israel, I can't help but think back to how I celebrated the 69th anniversary of the State of Israel".

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