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Greenblatt: No Israel-Palestine peace talks in sight

November 14, 2017 at 1:56 pm

US Special Representative for International Negotiations, Jason Greenblatt in Ramallah, West Bank on 25 May 2017 [Issam Rimawi / Anadolu Agency]

No progress has been made in bringing together Israeli and Palestinian officials for peace talks, despite months of meeting with both parties, US Special Representative for International Negotiations Jason Greenblatt said yesterday according Ynet News.

In a statement released by the US Consulate General in Jerusalem, Greenblatt said the Trump administration would not enforce on a deadline on any part of the process, and claimed that it would never impose a deal on either party.

“Our goal is to facilitate, not dictate, a lasting peace agreement to improve the lives of Israelis and Palestinians and security across the region.”

Greenblatt and US President Donald Trump’s senior advisor and son-in-law, Jared Kushner, have met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, and other regional leaders for many months in the hope of resuming peace talks.

Read: PA will not abide by commitments due to new settlement building

The Israeli-Palestinian peace process stalled once again this year after the US revealed its peace “deal of the century” which, to the dismay of the Palestinians, ruled out the two-state solution as an answer to the conflict.

The plan was further undermined a week later, when leaked footage of Kushner revealed him expressing doubt as to whether there was any solution to the conflict at all.

Abbas also confessed in August that he did not understand Trump’s peace plan, despite having met US envoys over 20 times to discuss the matter.

As US envoys to the Middle East prepared to meet Palestinian and Israeli officials at the end of August, the US State Department failed to inspire hope in the Palestinians when it announced that committing to a two-state solution would make the US a biased intermediary.

Last month, Trump further stated that he wanted to give peace between Israel and Palestine “a shot”, before following through on his controversial election campaign promise of moving the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

The continual mixed messages received from the US on the peace process has failed to win over Palestinians, many of whom view the negotiations as predisposed to favour Israel, due to the strong Zionist stance of many senior American officials.

Kushner is a family friend of Netanyahu and US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman was a controversial choice for the role due to his opposition to a Palestinian state.

Read: US lawmakers campaign to cut funding to PA