Abbas peace initiative at United Nations stirs debate among Palestinians

Palestinian protesters throw shoes, eggs at US officials in Ramallah

Washington D.C. [USA], Feb 21 (ANI): Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Tuesday called for a Middle East peace conference to be held by mid-2018 and ruled out the United States as a broker of peace with Israel. That view of the Middle East was decisively repudiated this week, with Trump clearly aligning the United States with the majority of the Sunni Arab world, and Israel, against Iran.

Palestinians see the eastern part of the city as the capital of their future state and the USA move broke with decades of worldwide consensus that Jerusalem's status should be negotiated between the two parties. "The only way to move forward is to have direct negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians", he added.

Scheduled to speak after Abbas was Haley - but Abbas left the room before she could begin her speech.

It was only Abbas' second appearance before the Security Council, after a 2011 visit in which he advocated Palestinian statehood.

Israeli authorities also "continued to substitute administrative detention for criminal prosecution", says Amnesty, "holding hundreds of Palestinians, including children, civil society leaders and NGO workers, without charge or trial under renewable orders, based on information withheld from detainees and their lawyers".

Abbas's speech will come as Israel faces escalating tensions with Iran, a supporter of the Palestinian Authority.

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Abbas proposed to hold an global conference to discuss final status issues including Jerusalem and the establishment of a Palestinian state on the 1967 borders in line with worldwide legitimacy resolutions. "If Israel were to withdraw to 1967 lines the strategic asset that is Israel of today becomes a strategic liability for the USA and for all of its allies in the Middle East", Ettinger said.

The Trump administration is talking up a Middle East peace plan, but has provided few details or explained how unilaterally recognizing Jerusalem as Israeli's despite overwhelming global opposition was supposed to advance a two state solution. There is the path of absolutist demands, hateful rhetoric, and incitement to violence. Ambassador Danny Danon fired back, calling Abbas a coward who was "part of the problem" rather than part of the solution. "In the future, we will intensify our efforts to achieve membership in the United Nations", he said.

Haley disagreed, saying the Trump administration was offering "an outstretched hand" to the Palestinian people and their leaders.

She said the US will not change its decision on December 6 to move the USA embassy to Jerusalem, a move that has frozen U.S. Two Palestinians were killed by Israeli fire, Gaza medical sources said, after four soldiers were wounded in an apparent bomb attack on the border with the Palestinian enclave.

Following the declaration, the Palestinian Authority said that the USA is no longer fit to mediate in the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, while the U.S. threatened to cut off UNRWA funding for Palestinian refugees, and to any country that votes against the Jerusalem resolution at the United Nations.

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