US Plan to be published in June

The US plan for Israeli-Palestinian talks will be published in early June, Jared Kushner said yesterday.

Speaking to 100 foreign diplomats at Blair House, President Donald Trump’s son-in-law said the US plan will be presented after the new Israeli government is formed and following the end of Ramadan on 5 June. A source said Kushner urged the audience to keep an “open mind”. Kushner reportedly said that the plan will “require concessions from both sides but won’t jeopardise the security of Israel”.  The plan is expected to be more than 50 pages long and include sections on economic and political issues.

In late February, Kushner told Sky News Arabic that the plan will address the core issues of the conflict and would: “Formulate realistic solutions for the issues of 2019, which will improve quality of life.” He added that the plan will have: “A broad economic impact, not only on Israel and the Palestinians, but on the entire region as well.”

The Washington Post reported on Sunday that the plan will not propose the creation of a fully sovereign Palestinian state. Newly appointed Palestinian Authority (PA) Prime Minister, Mohammed Shtayyeh, said that the plan will be “born dead”. He said: “There are no partners in Palestine for Trump. There are no Arab partners for Trump and there are no European partners for Trump.” PA spokesperson and personal advisor to Mahmoud Abbas, Nabil Abu Rudeineh, said: “As long as Jerusalem is not on the table, Trump’s [Middle East peace] plan will not be on the table.”

Jason Greenblatt, US Special Envoy to the Middle East, said yesterday: “Why does the new PA Prime Minister hope for our plan to be ‘born dead’ & for peace to fail? By working with us, perhaps something wonderful can happen for Palestinians. We’ve repeatedly said this won’t just be an economic plan. PM Shtayyeh, starting a new job by condemning a plan you haven’t seen is unfair to Palestinians. You have an obligation to first look at an opportunity before you dismiss it. The PA can continue to push us away, but that will do nothing to improve the lives of the Palestinians.”

Ron Dermer, Israel’s Ambassador to the US said this week that he was: “Confident that this administration — given its support for Israel — will take Israel’s vital concerns into account in any plan they will put forward.”

Fathom Journal published an interview on Tuesday with former US officials Dennis Ross and David Makosvky. They advised that the US plan should propose a Palestinian state, with part of East Jerusalem as its capital; should include large financial aid to support the plan; be incremental in nature; and should not encourage or acquiesce to Israeli settlement building. They said Abbas: “Cannot wait to say no to the Trump administration, and Netanyahu will count on Abbas to reject the proposals and then praise Trump for his efforts.”