Trump to launch peace conference with Arab leaders in Camp David
Kushner sets off to for Mideast visit to persuade leaders to attend the conference, set to take place before the Israeli September 17 elections; Netanyahu involved in the designing of peace plan Trump will present, but will not attend the conference
The peace conference is to take place in Camp David, the U.S. President's country retreat, and U.S. President Donald Trump is set to present his Mideast Peace Plan during the conference.
According to an unnamed source in Washington, the conference is set to take place before the September 17 elections in Israel; Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Israeli Ambassador to the U.S. Ron Dremer were involved in the designing the plan.
However, the source believes Netanyahu will not take place in the conference, since his presence will make it difficult for Kushner to convince Arab leaders to attend it.
The peace conference serves both Trump and Netanyahu's election campaigns; it portrays Netanyahu as a global leader and could affect Blue and White and the Labor parties' refusal to join his coalition after the elections.
On Tuesday, the security cabinet unanimously approved Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's plan to build 700 housing units for Palestinians living in the West Bank’s Area C, which is under full Israeli civil and security control.
The decision, that outraged rightist circles, was set to assist Kushner in convincing Arab leaders in taking part in the planned peace conference.
Kushner is set to travel to Egypt, Jordan, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates to hold talks during his current visit.
Trump is expected to present the peace plan in Camp David without going into details and conditions; yes to a Palestinian entity, but not necessarily a Palestinian state, yes to Palestinian presence in Jerusalem, but not necessarily as a capital.
PA leader Mahmoud Abbas is likely to rule the plan out, while other Arab leaders will legitimate the move simply by attending the conference. Netanyahu, on his hand, is likely to praise the move and say he has many reservations without specifying.
Last week, Jordanian King Abdullah II met with Abbas in Amman. After the meeting, the two published an announcement supporting a Palestinian state with a capital in East Jerusalem — both demands that Kushner aspires to get off the table.
"Both sides believe it is important to reach a steady peace between Israelis and Palestinians and stress that they will continue to back Palestinians in getting their legal rights and establishing a state based on the 1967 border, with East Jerusalem as its capital," said the mutual statement.