US President Donald Trump has unveiled a historic peace plan to resolve the Israel-Palestine conflict that could very well mark the end of the entire issue. The Trump plan seeks to address some of the bigger issues between Israel and Palestine. Taking to Twitter, Trump said, “I will always stand with the State of Israel and the Jewish people. I strongly support their safety and security and their right to live within their historical homeland. It’s time for peace!” He also tweeted in Hebrew to show his commitment towards the Israeli State.
I will always stand with the State of Israel and the Jewish people. I strongly support their safety and security and their right to live within their historical homeland. It's time for peace! pic.twitter.com/lKwQ9IKTUG
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 28, 2020
The plan put forth by the US President seeks to resolve the contentious issues of the border of Israel, Jewish settlements on the West Bank, the status of Palestinian refugees and most importantly the status of the historic city of Jerusalem.
In accordance with this plan, Israel’s sovereignty over the settlements in the occupied West Bank has been recognised. Israel would be allowed to annex the Jewish settlements on the West Bank and would also be allowed to gain security control over the Jordan Valley.
The proposal called West Asia peace plan calls for a four-year freeze on construction of Israeli settlements. According to Trump administration officials, speaking on the condition of anonymity, a comprehensive agreement would be negotiated during this period. However, it is not clear if the freeze would get extended in case a deal is not struck during the negotiation process.
The plan further states that during this period when Israel would further freeze construction of settlements, Palestine would take back its present complaints at the International Criminal Court. It would also refrain from taking any further action. The plan also calls upon Palestine to crack down upon terror groups such as Hamas and the Islamic Jihad.
The plan paves the way for the creation of a future State of Palestine. The historic plan has therefore adopted a two-state model. While Jerusalem would remain Israel’s undivided capital, “eastern Jerusalem” would serve as a Capital of the future State of Palestine. The Arab towns located in Southeast Israel could become a part of the future State of Palestine.
Tweeting about what the future State of Palestine would look like, Trump said, “This is what a future State of Palestine can look like, with capital in parts of East Jerusalem.” The tweet in Arabic, the official language of Palestine comes as subtle signalling on how this is an opportunity towards peace that Palestinian leaders cannot afford to miss.
This is what a future State of Palestine can look like, with a capital in parts of East Jerusalem. pic.twitter.com/39vw3pPrAL
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 28, 2020
While both Hamas that runs Gaza and Fatah Party of President Mahmoud Abbas, which runs the Palestinian Authority on the West Bank have come out rejecting Trump’s plan, along with the Islamic Jihad, Palestine stands to benefit out of the proposal.
US President Trump has offered $50 billion in the form of investments spread over the next ten years in case Palestine accepts his proposal. Moreover, Palestine would gain control over a larger territory than what it currently enjoys. In terms of the Oslo Accords, West Bank was divided into three areas and the Palestinian Authority enjoys direct control over only one of them.
The latest plan offers land swaps for Israeli annexation of the West Bank settlements. It proposes to enlarge the size of the Gaza strip and to connect it with the West Bank through a tunnel.
The Israel-Palestine peace negotiations had collapsed in the year 2014, and now the latest initiative by the US President, Donald Trump has revived hopes of an imminent solution to the longstanding territorial conflict in the region. Initially, the Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu was not in favour of the two-state solution. However, Trump has managed to bring him on board for a solution that essentially envisages a future State of Israel. He has now accepted the latest plan and also appeared with the US President at the White House in the backdrop of the historic initiative. This is, therefore, an unprecedented opportunity for the Palestinian leadership to lock peace and bring an end to the longstanding territorial and allied disputes with Israel.
The bold and historic proposal from Trump comes in the run-up to elections in Israel which are due in March. This is a welcome development for Benjamin Netanyahu, the sitting Israel PM even as the country stands to benefit from this plan that proposes to recognise Israel’s sovereignty over the Jewish settlements in the West Bank and Jerusalem will also remain the “undivided capital” of the Jewish country.
Trump is himself looking at the Presidential polls in the US scheduled for the month of November this year. In the middle of an impeachment trial, Trump has gone into election mode. He also wants to win over his peers in the days ahead of the next Senate meeting. Trump had come into limelight after killing Soleimani in a very bold move in Iran. He has now followed it up with a direct and bold Plan to conclusively resolve all disputes between Israel and Palestine. A proposal that promises peace in the decades’ old Israel-Palestine conflict augurs well for Trump in a critical year for the US President.