Mideast Daily News

Trump to Host Abbas at White House on May 3

By Michael Friedson | The Media Line

April 20, 2017


Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas will visit the White House for meetings with President Trump on May 3. The date was announced on Wednesday by Press Secretary Sean Spicer, the same day that in Ramallah, Abbas told a Japanese newspaper that he is “ready to meet with [Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu] any time in Washington under the patronage of President Trump.” Spicer said the scope of the Trump-Abbas meeting will be to find a way to jumpstart the stagnant Israeli-Palestinian peace process and to find a way to come to an agreement that would end the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians. The Palestinian daily Al-Quds reported that Team Trump has prepared a set of guidelines for negotiations that is very specific in rejecting pre-conditions to the talks. Nevertheless, the language Abbas used in accepting the White House invitation indicates that the point still needs further clarification. He said Palestinian cooperation is based upon talks predicated on “two states on 1967 lines [borders].” Al-Quds reports that President Trump is apparently willing to trade a promise not to move the Israeli embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem in return for an end to the Palestinian Authority’s program of paying stipends to families of those killed or jailed for taking part in terrorist attacks. The PA vehemently denied the Al-Quds scenario saying the conditions reported constitute a deal-breaker.

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