Thursday, 23 May, 2019

'Peace Is A Choice,' Trump Says During Appearance With Palestinian Leader

Christy Curtis | 26 May, 2017, 07:16

Earlier, on his fourth and final day in the Middle East, his motorcade crossed through the barrier surrounding biblical Bethlehem for a meeting with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, where he pressed for progress on the dormant peace process.

"I am truly hopeful that American can help Israel and the Palestinians forge peace and bring new hope to the region and its people", the USA president said.

Abbas said the Palestinians "are committed to working with [Trump] to reach a historic peace deal between us and Israel".

TRUMP: The Palestinians are ready to reach for peace.

Trump arrived in Bethlehem in a motorcade, crossing a checkpoint at Israel's controversial separation wall, and was greeted by Abbas and other dignitaries outside the presidential palace, The Washington Examiner reported.

He said that a coalition of partners would have to be formed to combat "extremism", mentioning by name Hamas, along with the Lebanese Shia group Hezbollah and Iran.

To get to Bethlehem, the location of the Church of the Nativity, where Jesus is said to have been born, Mr Trump passed through an Israeli checkpoint and a network of vast concrete blastwalls that separate the occupied territory from Israel.

Trump was unclear what measures this confrontation would entail. No details or timetable have yet to be established for negotiations.

"This visit has been quite high on performance and symbolism and quite low on substance", Tareq Baconi, a policy adviser for Al-Shabaka, The Palestinian Policy Network, told Al Jazeera.

That would be consistent with Trump's final hours in Israel and the West Bank.

PRESIDENT Donald Trump called for peace between Israel and Palestine, and asked both sides to put aside the "pain and disagreements of the past".

"Peace is a choice we must make each day, and the United States is here to help make that dream possible for young Jewish, Christian and Muslim children all across the region", he said.

The days of Obama's mild criticisms of Israel's human rights record are over. We need to understand the situation as one where there's an occupier and an occupied. He needs to go and take it the next step and recognize it's not only part of Jerusalem, it is part of Israel, that we need to recognize the thousands of years of history and connection to this place.

Rather, due to claims to the city from both Israel and the Palestinian Authority, the worldwide community has largely supported calls for direct negotiations between the two parties as to the final status of the city.

Donald Trump on Monday was on the second stop of his first global tour, having arrived from Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, aboard Air Force One, Efe news reported.

After Israel and the Palestinian territories, Trump heads to the Vatican, and to Brussels and Italy for North Atlantic Treaty Organisation and G7 meetings.

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