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US Prez’s Mideast team to push peace plan in region

| | Washington

The White House says President Donald Trump’s Mideast negotiating team will visit the region next

week as it finalises its as-yet unveiled Israeli-Palestinian peace plan and will hold talks on deteriorating conditions in the Gaza Strip. The trip comes as officials say the Trump administration is near completion of the plan with an eye on a possible release this summer.

The National Security Council said Wednesday that Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner and special representative for international negotiations Jason Greenblatt would travel to Israel, Egypt and Saudi Arabia.

It said they would discuss “the next stages of the peace effort” and get ideas from regional leaders about “remaining questions the White House peace team has.”

No stop in the Palestinian territories is planned, although the NSC said the itinerary may be expanded. However, the prospect of Palestinian interest in the peace proposal appears dim. Peace talks have been frozen since 2014, and Palestinian leaders have been boycotting high-level talks with US officials for months, complaining that the Trump is biased toward Israel.

US officials had said in late May that the administration was aiming to release the peace plan shortly after the Muslim holy month of Ramadan ends later this week.

However, that timeline appears to have been pushed back to at least August, the same officials said.

The Kushner, Greenblatt trip comes at a particularly fraught time in US-Palestinian relations, which have plummeted since Trump recognised Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and moved the US embassy to Tel Aviv.  

 
 
 
 
 

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