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Trump’s peace plan may polarise Middle East: Palestinians

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As U.S. President Donald Trump prepares to host Israeli leaders in Washington to reveal details of his long-delayed Middle East peace plan, Palestinians warned on Friday that no deal can work without them on board.

Trump invited Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his chief rival centrist former Gen. Benny Gantz to the White House next week, saying he would unveil the plan before his Tuesday meeting with Netanyahu.

However, Nabil Abu Rudeineh, spokesman for Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, said there had been no communication with the Trump administration and that no peace deal could be implemented without the approval of the Palestinian people and the Palestinian leadership.

“This is the only way if they are serious, if they are looking for stability in the whole region,” Rudeinah said.

Israeli-Palestinian peace talks collapsed in 2014 and Palestinians have called Trump’s proposal dead in the water, even before its publication, citing what they see as his pro-Israel policies.

The Palestinians have boycotted political dealings with the Trump administration since it reversed decades of U.S. policy on the conflict, splintering the international consensus.

It has refused to endorse the two-state solution, the longtime international peace formula that envisages a Palestinian state established in territory that Israel captured in the 1967 Middle East war.

The Trump administration also recognised Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and moved its embassy there. It also announced that Washington no longer views Israeli settlements on occupied West Bank land as “inconsistent with international law”.

Edited By: Abiodun Oluleye/Silas Nwoha

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