Germany, Europe react to Trump’s Middle East peace plan

Following Trump’s release of his Israeli-Palestinian plan, world leaders have responded to his proposal of a two-state solution with Israeli settlements. The plan calls for a minimum four-year freeze in settlements.

DW
Boris Johnson, Heiko Maas and Antonio Guterres

Leaders from around the world have responded with mixed reactions to US President Donald Trump’s long-awaited Middle East plan unveiled on Tuesday.

The proposal was released alongside Israeli leader Benjamin Netanyahu in Washington. Palestinian leaders said they were not invited to attend the talks and preemptively rejected the plan. Trump’s proposal made concessions to Palestinians — but under terms that they have previously ruled out, such as accepting West Bank settlements.

Europe and the UN were lukewarm and cautious after the peace plan was released.

Germany 

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas has called for a balanced approach to breaking the deadlock. “Only a negotiated two-state solution, acceptable to both sides, can lead to a lasting peace between Israelis and Palestinians,” he said.

Maas added that Trump’s proposal raised questions “about the involvement of the conflicting parties in a negotiation process and their relationship to recognized international parameters and legal positions.”

Representatives from the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) and Social Democratic Party (SPD), parties within the grand coalition, doubted that Trump’s plan would achieve sustainable peace in the Middle East.

CDU lawmaker Johann Wadephul described the proposal as a “unilateral peace plan” that would bring “no lasting peace” in the Middle East. Wadephul stressed that Trump’s two-state solution would deviate from the one envisioned by the European Union (EU) and the German government.

United Nations

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said the UN supports two states living in peace and security within recognized borders, on the basis of the pre-1967 lines.

“The position of the United Nations on the two-state solution has been defined, throughout the years, by relevant Security Council and General Assembly resolutions by which the Secretariat is bound,” said Stephane Dujarric, a spokesman for Guterres.

European Union

The EU urged Israelis and Palestinians to study the proposal carefully.

Josep Borrell, the EU’s highest-ranking diplomat, said the block will “study and assess” Trump’s plans on the basis of its commitment to a “negotiated and viable two-state solution that takes into account the legitimate aspirations of both the Palestinians and the Israelis.”

Paris was open to Trump’s efforts to come up with a plan, but said it would look closer at the details. “France welcomes President Trump’s efforts and will study closely the peace program he has presented,” said a statement from the French foreign ministry.

The statement also reiterated France’s wish for a two-state solution.

UK

Britain, which is set to depart from the EU on Friday, was much warmer to Washington’s proposals.

“This is clearly a serious proposal, reflecting extensive time and effort,” British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said in a statement.

Earlier, Prime Minister Boris Johnson spoke to Trump, saying the proposal “could prove a positive step forward.”

Russia

Russia said it would assess the proposal and called on Israelis and Palestinians to negotiate directly to find a “mutually acceptable compromise.”

Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov added, “We do not know if the American proposal is mutually acceptable or not. We must wait for the reaction of the parties.”

The White House 

Trump called the plan a “win-win” for both Israel and Palestinians and said Palestinians should not miss their chance at independence.

“It’s going to work,” Trump said as he presented the proposal at a White House ceremony.

“(Palestinian) President Abbas, I want you to know, that if you chose the path to peace, America and many other countries … we will be there to help you in so many different ways,” he said. “And we will be there every step of the way.”

Meanwhile,  Netanyahu said the plan was “a  great plan for Israel. It’s a great plan for peace.”
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Palestinian leaders

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas rejected the plan as “nonsense” and promised to “resist the deal in all its forms.”

“This conspiracy deal will not pass. Our people will take it to the dustbin of history,” Abbas said.

Hundreds of Palestinians protested in the Gaza Strip ahead of the unveiling of the plan. More protests were expected throughout Wednesday.

Hamas, a Palestinian militant Islamist group, called Trump’s proposal a “hostile deal.”

Palestinians reject Middle East peace plan
Arab League

The Arab League will hold an urgent meeting on Saturday in response to Trump’s proposal. Abbas is expected to attend.

Secretary General Ahmed Aboul Gheit said the plan reveals a waste of legitimate rights of Palestinians.

“Our identity as Arabs and Muslims is over … I felt totally ashamed watching Trump with the Israeli leader,” Sheikh Ahmed al-Tayeb said.

However, Gheit added that the League will study “the American vision carefully.” “We are open to any serious effort made to achieve peace,” he said.

Israel

Israel, delighted with the proposal, vowed to immediately urge forward its plans to annex the strategic Jordan valley and all the Israeli settlements in occupied territories.

Netanyahu said he would ask his Cabinet to approve the annexation plans in their next meeting on Sunday, which could spark anger among Palestinians.

“This dictates once and for all the eastern border of Israel,” Netanyahu told reporters. “Israel is getting an immediate American recognition of Israeli sovereignty on all the settlements, without exceptions.”

The longtime Israeli leader said the proposal was “a great plan for Israel” and “a great plan for peace.” He referred to Trump as “the greatest friend that Israel has ever had in the White House.”

 

January 29, 2020 | 4 Comments » | 541 views

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4 Comments / 4 Comments

  1. There is ONE WAY to make this plan a true peace plan. There needs to be an exchange no not a land swap.

    Take the Pal-Arabs ship them to Finland. Then send back Finns in exchange. Since the Finns will not be interesting in killing Israelis and destroying Israel the peace plan will work. The Finns will be interested in co-existing on a peaceful basis with culture exchanges and doing lots of business.

    So unless you can get an exchange like the one described above or change the Pal-Arabs DNA to be peaceful and accept Jewish neighbors on a permanent basis no elaborate plan of any type can bring peace.

    The Pal-Arabs have said NO to the plan already, they knew they did not need to read it because they are not interested in peace with Israel but want to destroy Israel. The Pal-Arabs thrive on saying NO plus violence. That is why a Pal-Arab state will not arise from this plan.

  2. Leaders from around the world have the right to respond to Israel’s choice in this Middle East peace plan. I have to say though, that just as all the European countries and the UK make their decisions themselves without requiring assistance from other countries of friendship, the same must apply to Israel, who, as a sovereign nation, should be considered capable of making its own decisions regarding all that they do. At present, there is discussion of a peace plan that will be proposed to the Palestinians. It’s outcome might or might not please any of all of the above mentioned countries but, just as all these countries make their own decisions, so will Israel. The EU and the UK are not responsible for the Palestinians and therefore have no say in what takes place in Israel in regard to this cohort.

  3. Arab league says ‘waste of legitimate rights of sodomites? ‘ what are the so called legitimate writes, rights, wrongs ups, downs of the sodomites?
    Face it arab league is not premier .

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