(7 Sep 2018) A senior Palestinian official labeled US President Donald Trump and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's policies toward Palestinians as equal to madness on Friday. Saeb Erekat said during a press conference in the West Bank city of Jericho that the US refused to bring the Israelis and Palestinians to negotiations and wanted to force the Palestinians to capitulate. He also blasted US Ambassador to Israel, David Friedman, of wanting "to push this region towards a religious war." Erekat spoke ahead of the upcoming 25th anniversary of the Oslo agreement, a peace deal that brought hope on both sides of the divide for a peaceful resolution. Palestinians accuse the US of being unfairly biased in favour of Israel, citing a series of steps taken by the White House. Trump has recognised Jerusalem as Israel's capital, over Palestinian objections, and last week cut 200 million US dollars in development aid to the Palestinians. Friday's decision cut an additional 300 million US dollars to the United Nations Relief and Works Administration (UNRWA), an agency that serves millions of Palestinian refugees and their descendants across the region. They accuse the Trump administration of trying to remove sensitive core issues from the negotiating table as it prepares to propose a Mideast peace initiative. The tense relations between the two have raised new questions about the viability of any future US peace plan. US President Donald Trump's Mideast team, led by his adviser and son in law Jared Kushner, have been working on their plan for about a year and a half but have not said when it will be made public.
Yasser Abed Rabbo (Arabic: ياسر عبد ربه) also known by his kunya, Abu Bashar (Arabic: ابو بشار) (born 1944) is a Palestinian politician and a member of the Palestine Liberation Organization's (PLO) Executive Committee.
Published on 21 jul. 2015
The Palestinian chief negotiator to permanent status talks with Israel warned on Wednesday that the deadlock between the Palestinian authority and Israel needs to be broken to prevent an escalation into violence.
The Palestinian Authority also said it will demand that foreign diplomats visiting the west side of Jerusalem will be made to visit the Arab sector, in the east.
Yasser Abed Rabbo held a news conference in Ramallah on Wednesday at which he made perfectly clear what the Palestinians feared most if relations with Israel are not improved.
The Palestinian chief negotiator to permanent status talks with Israel said that the situation was likely to get worse unless the real issues are discussed.
SOUNDBITE: (English) "There is a real crisis in the Palestinian state and that if we do not overcome the obstacles that are facing the current situation, the crisis will deepen more and more and there is a lot of frustration in the Palestinian state. Any spark might trigger an explosion in the Palestinian state." SUPER CAPTION: Yasser Abed Rabbo, Palestinian chief negotiator
Meanwhile Nabil Shaath, the Palestinian minister for planning and co-operation, sent out a tough message to visiting dignitaries.
Any diplomats who refuse to visit the east side of Jerusalem will not be allowed access to Palestinian authority areas.
SOUNDBITE: (English) "Such a policy really of extortion and an attempt to preempt the permanent situation of Jerusalem as a Palestinian city and capital of our future independent Palestinian state. We really told our guests that in case they go towards Jerusalem and reject our invitation for them to meet with the Palestinians in east Jerusalem, we do not want to receive them at all." SUPER CAPTION: Nabil Shaath, Minister for planning and co-operation
Shaath said that the Palestinian demand would be conveyed to all the foreign consuls and ambassadors in Israel.
Nabil Ali Muhammad (Abu Rashid) Shaath (Arabic: نبيل شعث, Nabīl Shaʿath, also spelled Sha'ath; born August 1938 in Safad) is a senior Palestinian official. He has held the following titles:
- Palestinian chief negotiator - Palestinian cabinet minister - Palestinian International Co-operation Minister - Planning Minister for the Palestinian National Authority - Acting Prime Minister of the PNA
Shaath served as the Palestinian Authority's first ever foreign minister from April 2003 to February 2005.
Shaath was Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Information in the Palestinian Authority Government of February 2005. On 15 December 2005, he became Acting Prime Minister of the Palestinian Authority after Ahmad Qurei resigned. He lost that position nine days later when Qurei returned to office.