Trump drops ‘two-state’ com­mit­ment

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - WORLD -

bond be­tween their coun­tries.

And while he urged Netanyahu to “hold back” from build­ing Jewish set­tle­ments for a “lit­tle bit”, Trump broke with in­ter­na­tional con­sen­sus in­sist­ing on a fu­ture that in­cluded a Pales­tinian state along­side Israel.

“So I’m look­ing at two-state and one-state, and I like the one that both par­ties like. I’m very happy with the one that both par­ties like,” he said. “I can live with ei­ther one.”

Trump said he had thought a two-state so­lu­tion “looked like it may be the eas­ier of the two. But hon­estly, if Israel and the Pales­tini­ans are happy, I’m happy with the one they like the best.”

This change in the US stance was cal­cu­lated to please Netanyahu and his right-wing coali­tion.

“I think the Pales­tini­ans have to get rid of some of that hate that they’re taught from a very young age,” Trump said, echo­ing Netanyahu’s ar­gu­ment that the Pales­tini­ans are not ready for peace.

Netanyahu had warm words for the Is­raeli-US al­liance, and ham­mered home his own pre­req­ui­sites for peace.

“First, the Pales­tini­ans must rec­og­nize the Jewish state. They have to stop call­ing for Israel’s de­struc­tion,” he said.

“Se­cond, in any peace agree­ment, Israel must re­tain the over­rid­ing se­cu­rity con­trol over the en­tire area west of the Jor­dan River.”

This re­gion con­tains the en­tire West Bank area that would rep­re­sent the heart of any Pales­tinian state as con­ceived in all pre­vi­ous in­ter­na­tional agree­ments.

De­spair, con­ster­na­tion

Barack Obama’s ad­min­is­tra­tion had warned Israel that if it did not reach a two-state deal with the Pales­tini­ans, it would never reach an ac­com­mo­da­tion with the Arab world.

The shift in Wash­ing­ton’s po­si­tion, which was re­vealed overnight by a White House of­fi­cial, trig­gered Pales­tinian de­spair and con­ster­na­tion in in­ter­na­tional cap­i­tals.

The se­cond-rank­ing of­fi­cial in the Pales­tine Lib­er­a­tion Or­ga­ni­za­tion, Saeb Erekat, de­nounced it as an at­tempt to “bury the two-state so­lu­tion and elim­i­nate the State of Pales­tine”.

He im­plic­itly warned Is­raelis that any sin­gle nation that emerged would not be specif­i­cally Jewish.

“There’s only one alternative,” he said. “A sin­gle demo­cratic state that guar­an­tees the rights of all: Jews, Mus­lims and Chris­tians.”

Speak­ing in Cairo af­ter talks with Egypt’s Pres­i­dent Ab­del Fat­tah al-Sisi, UN chief An­to­nio Guter­res warned that “every­thing must be done” to pre­serve the two-state so­lu­tion.

So I’m look­ing at two-state and one-state, and I like the one that both par­ties like.” Don­ald Trump, US pres­i­dent

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