June 23, 2017

Abbas adviser says Trump visit could reopen path to talks

24 May 2017, 08:28 | Grady King

The recent incident happened when the couple disembarked from Air Force One at Tel Aviv

The recent incident happened when the couple disembarked from Air Force One at Tel Aviv

The next stop on his overseas trip is Jerusalem. The trip has been billed as a chance to visit places sacred to three of the world's major religions.

The US welcomed the move but the Palestinians said they had heard such promises before.

MARTIN: So what is on the president's itinerary?

As well as the concessions, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's Security Cabinet - a forum of senior ministers - voted to establish a committee to examine legalizing outposts built without formal approval in the occupied West Bank. It later corrected his title to president of the Palestinian Authority.

Israel shares the antipathy many Arab states have towards Iran, seeing the Islamic Republic as a threat to its existence.

But then he's also going to be doing some things that are more unusual for a US president. On Monday in Jerusalem, he will pray at the Western Wall and visit the Church of the Holy Sepulchre.

"From my opinion it was a general [i.e., ordinary] visit for the American president", said Haddad. The demonstrations are meant to draw attention to a month-long hunger strike by hundreds of prisoners being held by Israel and to protest what many Palestinians say is unfair US support for Israel. Obama visited there, but he visited as a senator, not a president.

"Israel shares commitment to peace - already made with Egypt and Jordan", he said.

But both sides want to give the new USA administration a chance.

Israeli ministers have approved a number of measures aimed at improving the Palestinian economy and facilitating crossings, said to be at Mr Trump's request.

But the visit also comes as the U.S.

But hours later, Nikki Haley, Trump's United Nations ambassador, asserted that the wall is part of Israel. Can we expect any new initiatives or any particular steps forward in the peace process during this visit?

"I think the president has indicated he's willing to put his own personal efforts into this, if the Israelis and the Palestinian leadership are ready to be serious about engaging as well", Tillerson said.

The president has also sent mixed signals on the issue of Jerusalem, pledging to move the USA embassy there from Tel Aviv, angering Palestinians and delighting Israelis. "Just the other day they tried to carry out a lynching", Ben Dahan told Army Radio, referring to a deadly incident in the West Bank last week, in which an Israeli was mobbed by Palestinian rock-throwers in West Bank and opened fire, killing one of the them. So trust on both sides is very, very low.

Trump has indicated a desire to restart the Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations that broke down in 2014.

"I look forward to working closely with you to confront the dangers we face together in this violent and volatile Middle East", Netanyahu said in remarks before the two leaders, joined by their wives, sat down for dinner.

Their talks come with hundreds of Palestinians in Israeli jails on hunger strike since April 17, and activists were hoping to display banners in Bethlehem to drawn Trump's attention to it. Everyone here is looking for positive optics.

Israel considers the entire city to be its capital while the global community says the future of east Jerusalem, claimed by the Palestinians, must be resolved through negotiations.

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