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Elham AbolFateh

Middle East

U.S. launches economic formula for Middle East peace، Palestinians unhappy

Tuesday 25/June/2019 - 07:57 PM
Sada El Balad
Edited by: Mohamed Emad

The Trump administration launched a $50 billion economic formula for Israeli-Palestinian peace on Tuesday، saying an investment program for the Palestinians was a precondition for ending the decades-old conflict، according to Reuters.

U.S. President Donald Trump’s senior adviser and son-in-law Jared Kushner opened a two-day international meeting in Bahrain to rally support for the blueprint، which has met broad disdain from Palestinians and others in the Arab world although regional U.S. allies such as Saudi Arabia discreetly support it.

“We can turn this region from a victim of past conflicts into a model for commerce and advancement throughout the world،” Kushner told the gathering، attended by the heads of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas، whose Palestinian Authority exercises limited self-rule in the Israeli-occupied West Bank، was scathing about its prospects:

“Money is important. The economy is important... The political solution is more important.”

The political details of the peace plan، almost two years in the making، remain secret. Neither the Israeli nor Palestinian governments attended the curtain-raising event while several Arab states stayed away or sent deputy ministers.

The conference is taking place in Bahrain، home to the U.S. Navy’s Fifth Fleet، amid high tension between Tehran on the one hand and Washington and its Sunni Muslim allies Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates on the other. All share a common foe with Israel in Shi’ite Iran.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu، a close Trump ally، said Israel was open to the proposal.

Washington will be hoping that wealthy Gulf Arab states show a concrete interest in the plan، which expects donor nations and investors to contribute $50 billion to the Palestinian territories، Jordan، Egypt and Lebanon.

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