Arab Member of the Knesset, Hanin Zoabi, confirmed that the deal of the century depends on the Palestinian Authority’s (PA) position toward Trump’s Jerusalem decision: “If the PA “started looking for other ways to fight, Trump would not be able to pass his deal,” she said.
In an exclusive interview with Al-Resalah Net, Zoabi pointed out that if “the Authority took advantage of people’s support to improve its negotiating position and put pressure on Trump to retract annexing East Jerusalem in order to put negotiations on track again, then the PA will not represent an obstacle to the deal”.
She clarified that Palestinian people are the actors in this issue and their sacrifices can turn the table on Trump and Israel. She stressed also that the Authority has only two options; either to stand by people’s side or pursue the policy of security coordination with Israel.
Zoabi added that “the Authority has to provide political cover for the struggle of its people, otherwise it will provide a cover for Israelis and Americans to continue the deal of the century and expand settlements”.
Zoabi went on: “the Authority continues relying on the same old path, and regional support, even if it is partial and [based] on regional balance rather than on popular struggle.”
She stressed that “the PA is aware of the fact that it does not possess a liberation project. Instead, it is dealing with the issue as a diplomatic case rather than a fight for the liberation of Palestinians, because the one who seeks liberation would rely on his people and cause, not regional concessions”.
Zoabi explained that the Authority did not give any signals of its desire to stop security coordination or reconciliation, nor did it provide indication that it wants to change the rules of the game.
“The Authority is now part of the problem, not part of the solution, and if it wants to stay on the course of security coordination, people won’t be able to fight against Israel”, said Zoabi.
The resolutions which came out of the Islamic Summit in Istanbul did not support any realistic move on a regional level. Zoabi stressed that the weakness of the regional position toward Trump’s decision was enough to provide a green light for pursuing the deal and to ensure that these parties will not represent an obstacle to it.
She said that the regional pressure exerted on PA President Mahmoud Abbas in order not to participate in the Istanbul summit proved that there is a consensus between these regimes and Trump and that they preliminary agreed to pursue the implementation of this deal.
Egypt and the United Arab Emirates did not take part in the Islamic summit, while Saudi Arabia sent its religious endowments minister to participate in the summit. The Washington Post reported that the UAE and Egypt put pressure on President Abbas and Jordanian King Abdullah II in order to prevent them from participating in the summit or to reduce the level of representation.
She noted that even though these parties were not aware of the details of the plan, they notified Trump that the conditions were ripe for the implementation and that the summit won’t be an obstacle to this move.
Zoabi pointed that some of these parties knew about this deal but their response was soft and weak, and that was enough for Trump to do what he wanted.
She asserted that Jerusalem won’t be waived or handed over in any way, for “Israel is an occupying power and a military force, which is occupying Jerusalem and this city is not property”.