- Trump Attempts to Push ‘Deal of Century’ Past Arabs, Palestinian Rights Uncertain
by White House adviser addressed Middle East leaders last week amid PA rejection
US President Donald Trump announced on 6 December 2017 his decision to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, in an historic, unprecedented recognition of the city as solely the capital of Israel, breaching international resolutions on the status of the occupied holy city.
As Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu triumphed, Palestinian rejection of the declaration was echoed by 128 member states of the United Nations General Assembly, which voted in favour of a non-binding motion against the US move.
For Palestinians demanding East Jerusalem as their capital, supported by Arab countries, the US had taken an unacceptable bias that will have a negative impact on the Palestinian-Israeli peace process, given that no agreement on Jerusalem’s status will be agreed upon until the final stages of the process.
The Egyptian Foreign Affairs Ministry supported that argument and said the move halted efforts to resume peace talks. Nonetheless, Trump revealed his intention to proceed with peace efforts. The Palestinian Authority, however, said it no longer considered the US as leading the process.
Nearly five months after the declaration, the US administration is trying to advance its plan, even as the Palestinians will not yet sit at the negotiating table. Touring the Middle East in May and June, US officials have reportedly been trying to rally in favour of the so-called “deal of the century”.