Rejecting Peace Plan, Palestinians Cut Ties With Israel and U.S.

Omar Fahmy and Ulf Laessing

 

(Reuters) - The Palestinian Authority has cut all ties with the United States and Israel, including those relating to security, after rejecting a Middle East peace plan presented by President Donald Trump, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said on Saturday.

 

Abbas was in Cairo to address the Arab League, which backed the Palestinians in their opposition to Trump’s plan.

 

The blueprint, endorsed by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, calls for the creation of a demilitarized Palestinian state that excludes Jewish settlements built in occupied territory and is under near-total Israeli security control.

 

“We’ve informed the Israeli side ... that there will be no relations at all with them and the United States including security ties,” Abbas told the one-day emergency meeting, called to discuss Trump’s plan.

 

Israeli officials had no immediate comment on his remarks.

 

Israel and the Palestinian Authority’s security forces have long cooperated in policing areas of the occupied West Bank that are under Palestinian control. The PA also has intelligence cooperation agreements with the CIA, which continued even after the Palestinians began boycotting the Trump administration’s peace efforts in 2017.

 

Abbas also said he had refused to discuss the plan with Trump by phone, or to receive even a copy of it to study it.

 

“Trump asked that I speak to him by phone, but I said ‘no’, and that he wants to send me a letter ... but I refused it,” he said.

 

Abbas said he did not want Trump to be able to say that he, Abbas, had been consulted.

 

He reiterated his “complete” rejection of the Trump plan, presented on Tuesday. “I will not have it recorded in my history that I sold Jerusalem,” he said.

 

 

Palestinian Rights

 

The blueprint also proposes U.S. recognition of Israeli settlements on occupied West Bank land and of Jerusalem as Israel’s indivisible capital.

 

The Arab League foreign ministers meeting in Cairo said the plan did not meet the minimum aspirations of Palestinians, and that the League would not cooperate with the United States in implementing it.

 

The ministers affirmed Palestinian rights to create a future state based on the land captured and occupied by Israel in the 1967 Middle East war, with East Jerusalem as capital, the final communique said.

 

Reporting by Omar Fahmy, Ulf Laessing, Rami Ayyub, Nidal al-Mughrabi, and Dan Williams; editing by Frances Kerry, Kevin Liffey ,and Nick Macfie.

 

This is an excerpt of an article originally published by Reuters. Read the rest of the article here.

 

Highbrow Magazine

 

Image Sources:

 

--Alisdaire Hickson (Flickr, Creative Commons)

--WhiteHouse.gov Photo (Flickr, Creative Commons)

 

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