World, Middle East

Kushner: US to announce new steps on Mideast peace plan

Trump likes Palestine's Mahmoud Abbas, wants to engage personally with him, says Jared Kushner

Umar Farooq   | 03.07.2019
Kushner: US to announce new steps on Mideast peace plan

WASHINGTON

U.S. President Donald Trump's senior adviser and son-in-law Jared Kushner said Wednesday that the next steps in Washington's Middle East peace plan will be revealed next week, according to the news site Axios. 

Kushner was in Bahrain last week to deliver the economic portion of the long-awaited peace plan for the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, dubbed the "Deal of the Century", at an economic conference, however refrained from unveiling the more anticipated political portion of the plan.

The Manama conference was attended by the U.S., Israel, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates, however, Palestine did not.

Palestinian-Israeli negotiations collapsed in April 2014 after Israel refused to stop settlement activity, accept a two-state solution based on the pre-1967 borders, and release Palestinian detainees from Israeli jails.

Trump's administration originally said it would wait until November to reveal the full plan, when Israel is to form a new government, however, a release next week would give an early glimpse into the future of the region as envisioned by the administration.

As per the plan, the White House called for $50 billion in investments for Palestine and neighboring Arab states and called for increased infrastructure projects between the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, with a stated goal to "empower" the Palestinian people.

Kushner emphasized that while Palestine made a "strategic mistake" by not attending the conference in Bahrain, Trump likes Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and would like to engage with him personally.

"The door is always open for the Palestinian leadership," Kushner said in an Axios report. "We respect President Abbas and we believe he wants to make peace and we want to give him the opportunity to try and do it".

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