EVERYTHING I CAN’
Trump vows to try broker peace deal between Israelis, Palestinians
UNITED States President Donald Trump vowed yesterday to do “everything I can” to achieve a peace agreement between the Israelis and Palestinians as he met Mahmoud Abbas in the occupied West Bank.
“I am committed to trying to achieve a peace agreement between the Israelis and the Palestinians, and I intend to do everything I can to help them achieve that goal,” Trump said in comments after holding talks with the Palestinian president here.
He arrived at the presidential palace in the West Bank city earlier yesterday, located only about a 20-minute drive from Jerusalem, but across Israel’s controversial separation wall.
On Monday, Trump held talks with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem.
Abbas greeted Trump outside the presidential palace and the two men walked along a red carpet onto its grounds.
Later, as Trump wrapped up the visit in a speech in Jerusalem, he called on Israelis and Palestinians to make compromises that could lead to peace.
“Making peace, however, will not be easy,” Trump told an audience of Israeli politicians and other dignitaries at the Israel Museum.
“We all know that. Both sides will face tough decisions. But with determination, compromise and the belief that peace is possible, Israelis and Palestinians can make a deal.”
Trump’s visit to Israel and the Palestinian territories is part of his first trip abroad as president, and follows an initial leg in Saudi Arabia, where he urged Islamic leaders to confront extremism.
Palestinian officials say they are ready to resume negotiations with Israel that collapsed in 2014, but the road ahead remains challenging.
Abbas is an unpopular leader, according to polls, and the Palestinian political landscape is split between his Fatah party and Hamas, the Islamist movement that is in control in the Gaza Strip and opposes negotiations with Israel.
Gaza is a coastal territory 60km west of the West Bank that is under a land and sea blockade imposed by Israel and Egypt. Agencies