Secretary of the Executive Committee for Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), Dr. Saeb Erekat, responded to statements by US President Donald Trump and his National Security Advisor, John Bolton, about the removal of Jerusalem from the negotiating table in the future by saying that there is no price for Jerusalem.
Erekat added, in the response PNN received by email, that without East Jerusalem, including the Holy Haram, the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, its old town and its walls, as the Palestine capital, there will be no meaning of Palestinian state.
He also stated that Trump, Bolton and Netanyahu must understand that there will no peace without East Jerusalem as the capital of the state of Palestine, based on the 1967 borders.
Erekat called on all Palestinian political factions to give priority to the supreme interests of the Palestinian people and to achieve reconciliation, including the truce based on the Egyptian initiative, depends on indirect negotiations between the PLO & Israel to reach a truce agreement similar to the 2014 agreement.
Erekat said that those who agree to a truce without national consensus are engaged with Netanyahu and Trump to pass the deal of the century, which seeks to destroy the Palestinian national project.
Trump says Israel will ‘pay a higher price’ after Jerusalem embassy move
US President Donald Trump said, last night, that Israel will “pay a higher price” in peace talks with Palestinians, following his decision to move the American embassy in Israel to Jerusalem.
Speaking at a political rally in West Virginia, Trump said Palestinians “will get something very good” after the embassy move, “because it’s their turn next”.
Trump told the West Virginia crowd that the embassy move was an important step towards a peace deal. “If there’s ever going to be peace with the Palestinians, then this was a good thing to have done,” he said. “We took it off the table. In past negotiations, they never got past Jerusalem. Now Israel will have to pay a higher price, because it’s off the table. The Palestinians will get something very good, cause it’s their turn next.”
Trump said he had received numerous phone calls from world leaders urging him not to go through with his plans to move the US embassy to Jerusalem, adding that he “now understands” why previous US presidents had not followed through on similar promises. “But, I approved it, and it should have been done years ago,” he said. Trump also described the Israeli-Palestinian peace deal as “the toughest of them all.”
US National Security Adviser John Bolton said on Wednesday, at a press conference in Jerusalem, that the Trump administration is continuing its work on a plan for a peace deal between Israel and the Palestinians. But he added that, while there has been “a lot of progress in the region”, no timetable had been set for announcing a deal.
Bolton clarified that Trump’s “higher price” comment was “not an issue of quid pro quo”. He said that he and others would expect Palestinians to say “So, we didn’t get that one, now we want something else,” adding that “ultimately this is something the parties are going to have to agree on.”