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Trump to meet Netanyahu in September

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will meet the US President on the side-lines of this year’s UN General Assembly in September.

Israel’s Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon confirmed the meeting to Israeli media and said “the Prime Minister’s speech is very important and many people are looking forward to hearing what he has to say”.

The Prime Minister’s Office on Wednesday did not confirm Netanyahu’s travel plans or the meeting with US President Donald Trump, but it is likely that the talks will focus on Iran, and the anticipated US plan for Israeli-Palestinian talks currently being finalised by Jared Kushner and Special Representative for International Negotiations Jason Greenblatt.

US officials told Haaretz yesterday that the US plan will “go beyond broad parameters that in the past didn’t actually solve the problem,” and will likely cause discomfort both in Israel and on the Palestinian side. A senior administration official refused to confirm the length of the document, but said that the plan is “fairly detailed and lengthy”.

Several US administration sources claim that the US team aim to deliver a plan that deals not only with the core issues of the conflict, but also to offer a wide range of pragmatic ideas that will “make lives better on both sides,” according to one official.

The official added: “We need to explain to both sides a realistic way to resolve the conflict, not just to debate unhelpful, calcified talking points”. Reports suggest that the US team believe the growing alignment of interests between Israel and the Arab world presents a rare opportunity for a breakthrough in the negotiations.
A new poll by the Jerusalem Media and Communication Center shows that 80.3 percent expect that the “deal of the century” promoted by the US administration will not produce anything acceptable to the Palestinians, as opposed to 6.8 percent who said the opposite.

However, only 28.1 percent agree with the Palestinians Authority’s decision to boycott the US following its recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel in December.