The White House denied claims that it yielded to Palestinian threats and that it agreed to present a peace plan in the next four months.
A senior White House official denied on Sunday reports that the US had made a commitment to submit a comprehensive diplomatic plan within a four-month time frame to advance the diplomatic process between Israel and the Palestinians, in exchange for a Palestinian commitment to hold back on their threat to take unilateral diplomatic initiatives against Israel.
On Sunday, the Israel Hayom daily quoted a senior Palestinian official who said that such a deal was reached between Jared Kushner, a top adviser to President Donald J. Trump, and Palestinian Authority (PA) head Mahmoud Abbas during their meeting in Ramallah on Thursday.
The unnamed White House official told Israel Hayon that the report’s “claim is incorrect and that such things were never said.”
However, a senior PLO official again insisted that such a commitment was made by the US, and that “Abu Mazen [Abbas] carries with him Kushner’s commitment to present a diplomatic plan within the next three to four months.”
“It is true we are pessimistic and disappointed by the American administration’s stance, but we have no other diplomatic alternatives,” the Palestinian official told Israel Hayom.
The Palestinians have expressed displeasure and set preconditions, including an ultimatum that unless progress towards a two-state solution is made within 45 days, the Palestinians will consider themselves no longer committed to US mediation. Kushner’s purported overture was supposedly a response to this ultimatum.
Abbas reportedly agreed in principle to Kushner’s request, but asked for Trump’s personal guarantee and commitment to the plan and the two-state vision.
Despite the seeming obstacles, Kushner and Netanyahu both expressed optimism about the possibility of successful negotiations.
By: World Israel News Staff