US President Donald Trump’s senior advisor Jared Kushner will meet with Jordan’s King Abdullah today to build support for the US plan to restart Israeli-Palestinian talks.
King Abdullah has not yet announced whether he will attend the Bahrain ‘economics workshop’ conference on 25 June but has complained that he has not been consulted about the content of the US plan. The Palestinian leadership has called for a boycott of the conference and said they will not be attending. Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Qatar said they will participate.
A White House official told Reuters that Kushner’s visit to the Middle East is to boost support for the US-led conference in Manama on 25-26 June, in which Kushner is set to unveil the first part of Trump’s long-awaited Israeli-Palestinian plan.
Kushner, the chief architect of the US plan is also expected to visit Israel later this week. He stressed that the economic component is just one part of the US plan, noting that it will only succeed if “the core political issues are resolved”.
Kushner met yesterday with Morocco’s King Mohammed VI and was accompanied by Jason Greenblatt, Trump’s special representative for international negotiations, and Brian Hook, the US special representative for Iran.
Greenblatt tweeted: “Honoured to share an Iftar this evening with His Majesty King Mohammed VI, Crown Prince Moulay Hassan, FM Nasser Bourita & Jared Kushner. Thank you to His Majesty for a special evening and for sharing your wisdom. Morocco is an important friend & ally of the US.”
According to WAFA news agency, Chinese Ambassador to Palestine, Guo Wei, said his country, along with Russia, would not participate in the Bahrain conference. Wei reportedly made the remarks in a meeting with Nabil Shaath, a top adviser to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. Wei said: “Boycotting the Bahrain conference comes within the framework of a bilateral Russian-Chinese agreement not to participate.”
The Russian Foreign Ministry said yesterday that the US was attempting to: “Impose an ‘alternative vision’ of the Palestinian-Israeli settlement. The Palestinian leadership has already categorically refused to take part, saying that the PLO will not surrender to anyone its exclusive rights to make crucial decisions regarding the realisation of Palestinians’ national aspirations.”