Palestinians Cut Ties With Israel, US After Refusing to View Trump Peace Plan

February 1, 2020 Updated: February 2, 2020
FONT BFONT SText size

CAIRO—The Palestinian Authority has cut all ties with the United States and Israel, including those relating to security, after rejecting a Middle East peace plan presented by U.S. President Donald Trump, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said on Feb. 1.

Abbas was in Cairo to address the Arab League, which backed the Palestinians in their opposition to Trump’s plan.

The blueprint calls for the creation of a demilitarized Palestinian state.

“We’ve informed the Israeli side … that there will be no relations at all with them and the United States, including security ties,” Abbas told the one-day emergency meeting, called to discuss Trump’s plan.

Israeli officials had no immediate comment about his remarks.

Israel and the Palestinian Authority’s security forces have long cooperated in policing areas of the occupied West Bank that are under Palestinian control. The PA also has intelligence cooperation agreements with the CIA.

Abbas also said he had refused to discuss the plan with Trump by telephone, or to even receive a copy of it.

“Trump asked that I speak to him by phone, but I said ‘no,’ and that he wants to send me a letter … but I refused it,” he said.

Abbas said he didn’t want Trump to be able to say that he, Abbas, had been consulted.

He reiterated his “complete” rejection of the Trump plan, presented on Jan. 28. “I will not have it recorded in my history that I sold Jerusalem,” he said.

He added that although he was refusing to consider the plan, he was looking to present an alternative proposal to the U.N. Security Council.

“We’re not nihilists,” he said.

Jerusalem

The blueprint also proposes U.S. recognition of Israeli settlements on occupied West Bank land and of Jerusalem as Israel’s indivisible capital. The capital of the State of Palestine would be Al-Quds, according to the plan released by the White House.

“Jerusalem will stay united and remain the capital of Israel, while the capital of the State of Palestine will be Al-Quds and include areas of East Jerusalem,” the plan states. Al-Quds is the Arabic name for Jerusalem.

“Israel has agreed to a four-year land freeze to secure the possibility of a two-state solution,” the plan states.

The Arab League foreign ministers meeting in Cairo said the plan didn’t meet the minimum aspirations of Palestinians, and that the organization wouldn’t cooperate with the United States in implementing it.

The ministers referred to Palestinian rights to create a future state based on the land captured and occupied by Israel in the 1967 Middle East war, with East Jerusalem as capital, in the final communique.

Foreign ministers from Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, three close U.S. allies, as well as Iraq, Lebanon, and others said there could be no peace without recognizing Palestinian rights to establish a state within the pre-1967 territories.

After Trump unveiled his plan, some Arab powers had appeared, despite historic support for the Palestinians, to show openness to considering dialogue regarding the plan.

Three Gulf Arab states—Oman, Bahrain, and the United Arab Emirates—attended the White House gathering where Trump announced his plan alongside Netanyahu.

By Omar Fahmy and Ulf Laessing. With additional reporting by Epoch Times staff.