Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin SalmanÂ has reportedly offered Palestinian Authority (PA) chief Mahmoud Abbas 10 billionÂ dollars, in return, for accepting US President Donald Trumpâs controversial proposalÂ for peace between the Israelis and Palestinians, dubbed âThe Deal of the Centuryâ.
The Lebanese daily Arabic-language newspaperÂ al-AkhbarÂ reported, according to Press TV/Al Ray, that Abbas turned down the offer, saying that supporting the deal would be âthe end of his political life.â
Al-AkhbarÂ cited leaked diplomatic reports based on conversations between the two Arab politicians, noting that the reports — written byÂ Jordanian envoy to Ramallah, Khaled al-Shawabkeh —Â wereÂ based on briefings with a number of Palestinian officials.
According to the Lebanese newspaper, bin Salman briefed Abbas on the contents of the American proposals during the latterâs visit to Saudi Arabia in December 2017, and asked the Palestinian leader how much his delegation’s annual budget was.
âIâm not a prince to have my own entourage,â Abbas replied.
âHow much money does the Palestinian Authority, its ministers and employees need?â bin Salman then questioned.
Abbas said that Palestinians need $1 billion, each year, to which the Saudi de facto ruler was said to have responded,Â âI will give you $10 billion, over 10 years, if you accept the deal of the century.â
Abbas, however, said no, because if he did, it would âmean the end of my political life.â
Bin Salman also told Abbas that Saudi Arabia and other Arab countries would help them expand their control over Areas B and C, in the occupied West Bank, and provide financial support for projects to boost their economy.
âSaudi Arabia will support the Palestinian Authority with more than $4 billion,â the Saudi crown prince reportedly said.
The Palestinian Authority chief highlighted that political realities prevent him from taking the so-called US peace plan, emphasizing that he could not make concessions regarding Israeli settlements, the so-called two-state solution and Jerusalem al-Quds.
Abbas underscored that the Americans would not provide any written proposals, but would adopt a tactic similar to the 1917Â BalfourÂ Declaration that led to the Israeli occupation of Palestinian lands.
Trumpâs so-called âpeace planâ has been dismissed by Palestinian authorities, ahead of its unveiling at the end of the holy fasting month of Ramadan and the formation of the new Israeli cabinet, most likely in June.
Speaking in the occupied West Bank city of Ramallah, on April 16, Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh lashed out at Trumpâs initiative, asserting that it was âborn dead.â
Shtayyeh noted that negotiations with the US were useless in the wake of the countryâs relocation of its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem al-Quds, which Palestinians consider the capital city of their future state.
Christopher Carlson is a full-time student of Religious Studies at Mount Mercy University, USA. He has been with the IMEMC since 2013. (email@example.com)