'Deal of the Century' is Surrender: Palestinian FM

Published May 11th, 2019 - 09:54 GMT
Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki (AFP)
Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki (AFP)
Highlights
"We cannot afford not to engage with any peace efforts," said Maliki, but he added that the US efforts could not be characterized "nor can qualify, as peace efforts, unfortunately."

Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki on Thursday voiced opposition to US President Donald Trump's so-called 'Deal of the Century', saying the terms amount to "surrender" for Palestinians.

"This is not a peace plan but rather conditions for surrender and there is no amount of money that can make it acceptable," al-Maliki said, addressing a UN Security Council meeting.

The Palestinians cut off contacts with the Trump administration after it recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel in December 2017 and have accused the United States of taking a strongly pro-Israel stance.

"We cannot afford not to engage with any peace efforts," said Maliki, but he added that the US efforts could not be characterized "nor can qualify, as peace efforts, unfortunately."

European powers along with Russia and China fear the US plan will ditch the two-state solution to the conflict that provides for a Palestinian state to be established as part of a final settlement.

The Palestinian Authority position of a two-state solution is supported by the UN and almost all of its 193 member-states.


The long-awaited US peace plan was crafted over two years by a team led by Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner and Middle East envoy Jason Greenblatt.

It is widely expected to impose Israel's positions on the Palestinians, without addressing key final status issues such as Jerusalem, illegal settlements, and borders - or ending the occupation.

The peace plan won't be released before the Muslim holy month of Ramadan ends during the first week of June, and perhaps not even then.

"It seems that the American position has been totally taken by the Israeli position and right now the US administration has no independent position," al-Maliki added.

Israel seized control of the West Bank, Gaza and East Jerusalem in the 1967 Arab-Israeli war and has militarily occupied the Palestinian territories ever since.

Successive Israeli governments have built illegal settlements in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem, with the number of Israeli settlers estimated at over 650,000.

This article has been adapted from its original source.


Copyright @ 2019 The New Arab.

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