Netanyahu: Israel will hear U.S. peace plan in 'fair and open manner'
Prime minister says he doesn't understand how the Palestinians can reject the Trump administration's peace proposal without 'hearing what's in it'; Netanyahu made the remarks while touring the Jordan Valley with U.S. National Security Adviser Bolton
Netanyahu made the statement while touring the Jordan Valley - the part of the West Bank that borders Jordan - with visiting U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton.
On Saturday, the White House released what they say is an economic part of the U.S. Mideast peace proposal, dubbed "the Deal of the Century." The $50 billion “peace to prosperity” plan, set to be presented by Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner at a conference in Bahrain next week, envisions a global investment fund to lift the Palestinian and neighboring Arab state economies.
"We will hear the American proposal in a fair and open manner. I can't understand how the Palestinians rejected the plan before even hearing what it is in it," Netanyahu said.
Palestinian officials are boycotting the Trump administration and have refused to engage with its Middle East plan.
Netanayhu also repeated Israel's position that any peace agreement include an Israeli presence in the Jordan Valley, an area the Palestinian want to be part of a future state.
"For those who say that for peace to be established Israel has to leave the Jordan Valley, I’ll say that’s not going to bring peace, that’s going to bring war and terror. We’ve been there and we don’t want to be there again," said Netanyahu. "Under any peace agreement, our position will be that Israel’s presence should continue here for Israel’s security and for the security of all."
"I can assure you that President Trump will take the concerns that you have voiced so clearly over the years very much into account as we go forward on this," said Bolton.
Netanyahu and Bolton were accompanied by U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman and Israeli Ambassador to the U.S. Ron Dermer. They were briefed on security issues by GOC Central Command Maj.-Gen. Nadav Padan, Civil Administration Deputy Head Col. Shai Karmona and IDF Jordan Valley Brigade Commander Col. Udi Tzur.