Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has expressed interest in a tripartite confederation with Jordan and Israel.
In a meeting with Israeli lawmakers and activists on Sunday, Abbas referred to a conversation he had with U.S. envoys Jared Kushner and Jason Greenblatt in Ramallah in 2017.
The envoys “asked me whether I believed in a confederation with Jordan. I said, yes, I want a three-way confederation with Jordan and Israel,” Abbas said.
He added rhetorically, “I asked them if Israelis would agree to such a proposal.”
But Abbas did not elaborate on any further details as such a proposal was not discussed widely.
He accused the United States and Israel of revoking the possibility of achieving peace, and he even described the US as an enemy of the Palestinians.
He said U.S. President Donald Trump and his Middle East peace envoys were “hostile” to the Palestinian people, citing Washington’s decision to dramatically cut aid.
The President met members of the Israeli Peace Now group, including executive director Shaqued Morag, and members of the Knesset Meretz MK Mossi Raz (a former Peace Now director) and Ksenia Svetlova.
Peace activists from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s right-wing Likud party attended the meeting as well.
At the meeting, Abbas said he supports Israel’s security, underlining that the Palestinian and the Israeli security forces work together “on a daily basis.”
“I have a problem with Netanyahu, not with Likud,” Abbas stressed.
He further said that the Israeli government refuses to conduct negotiations with the Palestinians, despite the fact that Russia, Japan, Belgium, and the Netherlands have repeatedly offered to host peace talks.
Abbas also criticized the U.S. for its alleged determination “to completely destroy UNRWA,” the international agency caring for hundreds of thousands of Palestinians considered refugees by much of the international community.
“Seventy percent of Gaza residents are refugees. Most of them live off UNRWA’s assistance,” Abbas told his Israeli guests.
“How is it possible that on one hand you cancel UNRWA and on the other hand help Palestinian residents?,” he asked in reference to a recent U.S. decision to end all funding for the U.N. agency.
This article has been adapted from its original source.
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