- Palestinians Say U.S. ‘Deal of the Century’ Will Finish Off Their State
by Samia Nakhoul, https://www.reuters.com/
BEIRUT (Reuters) – The U.S. blueprint to end the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians, still in draft form after almost two years, is seen by Palestinians, and by some Arab officials and politicians, as a plan to finish off the Palestinian cause.
The initiative, driven by Jared Kushner, Donald Trump’s son-in-law and White House adviser, was billed by the U.S. president as the “deal of the century”. While its precise outlines have yet to be revealed, Palestinian and Arab sources who have been briefed on the draft plan say Kushner has jettisoned the two-state solution – the long-standing U.S. and international formula that envisages an independent Palestinian state alongside Israel in the West Bank, east Jerusalem and Gaza.
After several postponements, Washington plans a first formal outing of the economic components of the plan at a “Peace for Prosperity” workshop in June in Bahrain. The plan faces possible delays due to political upheaval in Israel, where Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu must fight another election after failing to form a government.
Kushner and Trump, with backgrounds in real estate rather than diplomacy, seem to be approaching this hitherto insoluble conflict as a transaction, three Arab officials briefed on the plan said.