Trump Concludes Mideast Trip with Scathing Attack on Terror, Praise for Israel

Nick Mcbride
May 25, 2017

NY [U.S.A.], May 23: With an aim to resolve the Middle-east conflict, U.S. President Donald Trump met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas to advance the peace process.

US President Donald Trump's trip to Israel and the Palestinian territories saw the unpredictable leader tightly following protocol, but a few moments provided low-scale scandal and humour.

Netanyahu noted that if Monday evening's Manchester terrorist attack had been carried out by a Palestinian suicide bomber and had killed Israelis, then Mahmoud Abbas, far from condemning it alongside Trump in Bethlehem earlier Tuesday, would have been making payments to the terrorist's family.

While Trump notably did not endorse a Palestinian state, he did call for the resumption of peace talks, and expressed his hope for a lasting agreement between Israel and the Palestinians.

The short visit in Bethlehem came a day after Trump met Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, as Palestinians held a general strike in support of hundreds of hunger-striking prisoners held in Israeli jails.

He also faces mounting difficulties at home, where he is struggling to contain a scandal after firing James Comey as FBI director two weeks ago, and a widening investigation into his administration's connections to Russian Federation.

"We are ready to open dialogue with our Israeli neighbours to build confidence and create a real opportunity for peace", he said after talks with Trump. Speaking at the Israel Museum, he declared both sides ready to move forward, though there were no tangible signs of the peace process being revived.

Mr Trump again vowed that he was "personally committed" to helping the two sides reach a deal to end the decades-old conflict. Abbas's Fatah party is at sharp odds with the Islamist group Hamas, which is in power in Gaza, leaving no unified Palestinian position on peace.

After waving at the crowd, President Trump reached out for Melania's hand, when she whisked it away to tuck her hair. But it was tailor made for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who has tried to make the West understand that Israel can not compromise on its security on the front lines of the terrorist war sometimes conducted by Palestinians.

During his time in the region, part of a nine-day foreign trip that has taken in Saudi Arabia and will be followed by the Vatican, Italy and Belgium, Trump spent barely an hour with the Palestinians.

"From the Palestinian leadership's perspective, I don't think their definition of peace fits within what most of us at least here in Congress and in the United States would define as peace".

He became the first sitting USA president to visit the site in the Israeli-annexed east of the city.

"Then he leaves it to Greenblatt, Freidman and Kushner and says, 'Close it.'" Barak said, referring to Trump's son-in-law and two of his private lawyers, Jason Greenblatt and David M. Friedman who he has made, respectively, his main envoy to the region and the USA ambassador to Israel.

"Iran's leaders routinely call for Israel's destruction - not with Donald J. Trump".

Abbas said he was keen to "keep the door open to dialogue with our Israeli neighbors".

"I fear that we will be looking at war with Iran before too long as it is clear that Trump and his advisers are already completely in the Israeli and Saudi pockets on the issue", Giraldi, a former CIA Case Officer and US Army Intelligence Officer said Monday. The initiatives that won Nobel Peace Prizes, the Camp David accords in 1978 and the Oslo agreement in 1993, arose from talks begun in secret.

Other reports by VgToday

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