TRUMP'S DECISIONS | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, September 02, 2018 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:33 AM, September 02, 2018

ISRAELI-PALESTINIAN CONFLICT

TRUMP'S DECISIONS

FIRST BREAK WITH PALESTINIANS

On February 15, welcoming Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to the White House, Trump halts Washington's quest for a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, saying he would back a single state if it led to peace. On March 27 new US ambassador Nikki Haley promises an end to bias against Israel at the United Nations.

 

TRUMP AT WESTERN WALL

On May 3, Trump hosts Palestinian leader Mahmud Abbas at the White House, saying of a Middle East peace agreement: "We will get it done." On May 22, Trump becomes the first sitting US president to visit the Western Wall in Jerusalem's Old Town. Netanyahu announces new US military aid.

 

'ALLEGED' OCCUPATION

In September, US ambassador to Israel David Friedman, a longtime friend and advisor of Trump, angers Palestinians by downplaying the Israeli occupation of the West bank.

 

JERUSALEM DECISION

On December 6 Trump says "it is time to officially recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel", breaking with the policies of his predecessors and provoking criticism worldwide. Palestinians express rage. Palestinians have since refused all contact with the American administration, and no longer accept the United States as a peace mediator.

 

'SLAP OF THE CENTURY'

On January 14, 2018 Abbas denounces White House peace efforts as "the slap of the century". On January 16 Washington holds back $65 million, more than half of what that had been earmarked for the UN relief agency for Palestinian refugees, UNRWA. On January 25, Trump threatens to withhold aid worth hundreds of millions of dollars until they accede to US-brokered talks.

 

US EMBASSY IN JERUSALEM

On March 5 Trump hosts Netanyahu at the White House and says US-Israel ties have "never been better". On May 14, the transfer of the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem coincides with a bloodbath in the Gaza Strip, where about 60 are killed from Israeli fire. On June 1 the United States vetoes a UN draft resolution calling for protection measures for the Palestinians and on June 19 announces its withdrawal from the United Nations Human Rights Council over its alleged bias against Israel.

 

HALT TO US AID

The United States announces on August 24 it has cancelled more than $200 million in aid for the Palestinians in the Gaza Strip and West Bank, then on August 31 decides to end funding for UNRWA, saying the organisation was "irredeemably flawed".

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