Justice minister recommends Jordan-Palestinian confederation

Uniting the Palestinian population under one entity is the solution for a final status agreement, says Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked.

By Jack Gold, World Israel News

Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked has proposed a “confederation” between parts of the Palestinian Authority, Jordan and Gaza as a solution for the final status of the Palestinians’ self-governing.

Israel’s plan is to apply sovereignty on Area C and give the Palestinians living there full citizenship. Areas A and B will be part of a confederation, together with Jordan and Gaza, she told journalists Wednesday in Jerusalem, Times of Israel reported.

“There’s a large Palestinian population in Jordan, and the Palestinians already have a state in Gaza. In the distant future, a confederation of these three entities will be the right way forward,” she stated.

Shaked was apparently endorsing her party chairman Naftali Bennett’s Stability Plan, which calls for Israel’s annexation of Area C. The area, under Israel’s control as prescribed by the Oslo Accords, comprises about 60 percent of Judea and Samaria. Areas A and B are under full or partial Palestinian rule.

The minister acknowledged that the Palestinians currently oppose Bennett’s plan, insisting on a fully independent state, but she believes that that their position could change.

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“Today, they don’t agree; it may look like science fiction… Things change,” she said. “In the international community, they like to say that Judea and Samaria are under occupation — they’re not. They’re areas under dispute. Right now the Palestinians are opposed to our plan, but maybe in the future they will agree to a confederation.”

Speaking in October, Shaked said that with President Donald Trump in the White House, “now is the time” to begin applying sovereignty to Area C.

“It’s precisely during the Trump era that there’s an opportunity to act to apply sovereignty in places like Ma’aleh Adumim and Gush Etzion as a start,” she stated. “Jewish Home as a party will continue to push to apply sovereignty. That’s the right solution.”

However, in September, following reports that Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas supports a tripartite Israeli-Palestinian-Jordanian “confederation,” senior Israeli diplomats commented that Israel does not support such a proposal.

Israeli diplomats stated that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu continues to support a directly negotiated agreement with the Palestinians that provides them with a demilitarized entity, referred to at times as a “state minus,” with the Jewish state continuing to oversee security west of the Jordan River.