- Title: Palestinians and Israelis await Trump Mideast peace plan announcement
- Date: 28th January 2020
- Summary: JERUSALEM (JANUARY 28, 2020) (REUTERS) ISRAELI LAWMAKER OF BLUE AND WHITE PARTY, MICHAEL BITON, SPEAKING TO REPORTER (SOUNDBITE) (English) ISRAELI LAWMAKER OF CENTRIST BLUE AND WHITE PARTY, MICHAEL BITON, SAYING: "The fact that President Trump is promoting a peace process in the Middle East is a positive move to the hope for peace and agreement with the Palestinians and the states in the Middle East. But this agreement cannot be completed in the next month of elections in Israel." BITON'S EYES (SOUNDBITE) (English) ISRAELI LAWMAKER ELI AVIDAR, OF FAR-RIGHT YISRAEL BEITENU PARTY, SAYING: "We hear that it's an excellent plan as the prime minister is saying, that this is the best deal ever. We would like to see it, we would like to see the written pages, we would like to see the maps and only then we will decide whether it's good or bad. I'm sure that there are a lot of positive things within this plan but it needs to be seriously examined and it can only be seriously examined after the elections. Before the elections, few weeks before that it would be irresponsible and immature to make up our mind about it." (SOUNDBITE) (Hebrew) ISRAELI LAWMAKER OF THE ULTRA-ORTHODOX SHAS PARTY, MICHAEL MALKIELI, SAYING: "We are the kind of people who don't talk about what we didn't see. We strengthen the prime minister's hands and we are certain that he's doing the maximum possible, together with our great friend at the White House, to bring the best plan with the most security for the state of Israel. Shas is strengthening his hands and trusts the prime minister." LAWMAKERS IN KNESSET
- Embargoed: 11th February 2020 13:29
- Keywords: Benjamin Netanyahu Donald Trump Israel Palestinians West Bank peace plan
- Location: RAMALLAH, EFRAT, UNDISCLOSED LOCATION, RAS KARKAR, WEST BANK/JERUSALEM
- City: RAMALLAH, EFRAT, UNDISCLOSED LOCATION, RAS KARKAR, WEST BANK/JERUSALEM
- Country: Palestinian Territories
- Topics: Conflicts/War/Peace
- Reuters ID: LVA004BY38P53
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Israelis and Palestinians voiced low expectations on Tuesday (January 28) as they awaited U.S. President Donald Trump Middle East peace plan announcement.
While in Gaza thousands demonstrated against the upcoming announcement at a ceremony in Washington, West Bank Palestinians rejected the plan.
In the village of Ras Karkar, where residents protested against a new settlement being built on land they say is theirs, an elderly man told Reuters TV the Israeli settlements and roads created a 'spider web' that makes a viable Palestinian state impossible.
In the West Bank city of Ramallah, shop owners said they hoped the Palestinian leaders will unite against the American plan. While Israeli leaders have welcomed Trump's long-delayed plan, Palestinian leaders rejected it even before its official release. They say his administration is biased towards Israel.
The Palestinians fear Trump's blueprint will dash their hopes for an independent state in the West Bank, Gaza and East Jerusalem - areas Israel captured in the 1967 Middle East War - by permitting Israel to annex large chunks of occupied territory including blocs of Jewish settlements.
Earlier on Tuesday, Israeli troops reinforced positions near a flashpoint site between the Palestinian city of Ramallah and the Jewish settlement of Beit El.
Israeli Defence Minister Naftali Bennett, of the Yamina right-wing alliance said: "I hear threats from the Palestinian side. Nothing will deter us... The security forces and the IDF (Israel Defense Forces) are ready for all scenarios."
Trump will deliver joint remarks with Netanyahu at the White House later on Tuesday to outline his plan, the result of three years work by his senior adviser and son-in-law Jared Kushner.
Israeli-Palestinian talks broke down in 2014, and it is far from clear that the Trump plan will resuscitate them.
(Production: Eli Berlzon, Dedi Hayoun, Ilan Rosenberg, Ismail Khader, Saed Hawari, Nuha Sharaf, Lianne Back)
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