Jason Greenblatt says that the report is not helpful in advancing the Trump administration’s Israeli-Palestinian peace plan.
By David Jablinowitz, World Israel News
The Trump administration on Wednesday dismissed an Israeli television report on the U.S. president’s peace plan dividing Jerusalem as not accurate and not helpful.
The report, on Channel 13, said the proposal would provide for Jerusalem to be divided, with Israel maintaining sovereignty in west Jerusalem, parts of east Jerusalem and the “holy basin,” including the Old City and its immediate environs. However, it added that the “holy basin” area would be “jointly run” with the Palestinians, Jordan, and possibly other countries.
The plan reportedly would also offer a Palestinian state in 85-90% of Judea and Samaria, with major settlement blocs to be annexed by Israel. There would also be land swaps according to which the Palestinian state would receive land from within Israel in exchange for territory that Israel would annex in Judea and Samaria.
Referring to the reporter, President Donald Trump’s Special Representative for International Negotiations, Jason Greenblatt, tweeted: “While I respect Barak Ravid, his report on Israel’s Ch. 13 is not accurate. Speculation about the content of the plan is not helpful. Very few people on the planet know what is in it… for now…”
Greenblatt subsequently tweeted additional statements, including, “Over the coming period, unnamed sources will peddle narratives to the media and others based on motivations that are far from pure. Peddling false, distorted, or biased stories to the media is irresponsible and harmful to the process. Israelis & Palestinians deserve better.”
He then posted that he would “highly recommend” that people listen only to the official statements that come from him, Trump, the president’s son-in-law and adviser Jared Kushner, or U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman.
The report came amid continuing speculation over the content and timing of the plan, which has been dubbed the “deal of the century.” Pundits have assessed that the upcoming April 9 Knesset election could be yet another reason to delay publication of the plan and that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s considerations in moving for an early parliamentary election included a desire to delay the U.S. announcement. Ambassador Friedman has also indicated that the election could cause a delay.
On the other hand, there have been reports that the Trump administration might use the election as an opportunity to lay out its plan.
The Palestinian Authority (PA) has refused to hold meetings with U.S. officials in the aftermath of the move of the American embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
In response to the Israeli television report, the PA said Wednesday that “any peace plan that does not include an independent Palestinian state – with all of East Jerusalem as its capital – on the 1967 borders, is destined to fail.”