23 January 2018
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  • » 01/03/2018, 09.19

    ISRAEL - PALESTINE

    Jerusalem capital: Trump threatens to cut funds to Palestinians, contrary to the decision



    The US president adopts the policy of blackmail against the Palestinians. He claims to pay "hundreds of millions of dollars" without getting "appreciation or respect". PA responds: "We will not give in to blackmail". The Knesset votes a law that provides for the separation of Palestinian neighborhoods and prohibits future territorial renunciations with a view to peace.

    Jerusalem (AsiaNews / Agencies) - US President Donald Trump is threatening to cut aid to the Palestinians, who recently strongly attacked the White House and proposed the exclusion of the United States from any role in the Middle East peace process. The revolt of the Palestinian leadership is also a consequence of Trump's [controversial and one-sided] decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and transfer the US embassy there.

    A choice that had raised protests and indignation - with dead and wounded - concerned  Pope Francis and the Christian leaders of the region and determined resolutions and votes against the move at the United Nations.

    Following an increasing trend  in recent weeks, the White House seems to be adopting a policy of financial blackmail and has launched - through twitter - the guidelines of its foreign policy. This time the Palestinians, who "are no longer willing to talk about peace" in the disputed region, are being targeted by the president.

    The US leader recalls that "we pay them [Palestinians, ed] hundreds of millions of dollars a year and we do not get any appreciation or respect". He accuses Ramallah of not wanting "to negotiate a peace treaty with Israel, which has been necessary for so long". So, concludes the president, "why should we continue in the future with any of those massive payments?".

    The Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO, in a note signed by Hanan Ashrawi confirms that "we will not give in to blackmail [...] Now [President Trump] dares to accuse the Palestinians, for the consequences of his irresponsible actions". He added that the US leader has "sabotaged our search for peace, freedom and justice".

    The strategy of financial blackmail to the Palestinians was anticipated a few hours earlier by the US ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley. The head of US diplomacy at the UN had in fact said that Washington is ready to close the funding provided so far to the agency that provides humanitarian aid to Palestinian refugees, a body of which the United States is the main donor. In 2016 the US allocated a sum equal to 370 million dollars.

    Meanwhile, yesterday the Knesset (the Israeli Parliament) approved the bill called "Unified Jerusalem", which provides for the separation of Palestinian neighborhoods from the holy city and forbids the renunciation of any part of the city. For the future, any decision on Jerusalem will require the consent of 80 parliamentarians, even if it were to be a peace agreement. The motion passed with 64 votes in favor and 51 against, one abstention.

    Behind the bill, strongly supported by the ministers Naftali Bennett and Ze'ev Elkin, the objective is to isolate the Palestinian neighborhoods in Jerusalem and establish a new Israeli local council. It will make the transition of sovereignty to the Palestinian Authority even more difficult in some areas in the future.

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    See also

    20/12/2017 09:39:00 UN - ISRAEL - PALESTINE
    Jerusalem capital: the UN General Assembly to vote against Trump. US threats

    Tomorrow the 193 member countries will vote on a motion presented by Turkey and Yemen on behalf of OIC. It follows the document presented to the Security Council and marks the international isolation of Washington. US Ambassador: "We will take note of names" for probable economic retribution.



    19/12/2017 09:56:00 UN - ISRAEL - PALESTINE
    The United States vetoes UN resolution against Jerusalem capital. Israel’s gratitude

    Arab world’s criticism of US ambassador’s use of veto. The motion approved with 14 votes out of 15, confirming US isolation. Satisfaction of Israeli premier Netanyahu. The PLO no longer recognizes the United States as an interlocutor in the peace process.



    13/12/2017 09:34:00 TURKEY - ISRAEL - PALESTINE
    Jerusalem capital, Erdogan leads the Islamic uprising against Israel

    An extraordinary OIC summit is scheduled today in Istanbul, at the request of current president Turkey. Ankara's goal is to promote a common front in response to the controversial US decision. The Turkish leader stands as a new "defender of the Palestinian cause". But divisions and contrasts remain within the organization.



    18/12/2017 10:19:00 TURKEY - ISRAEL - PALESTINE
    Erdogan challenges Trump: A Turkish embassy in East Jerusalem, capital of Palestine

    The Turkish leader stressed that the holy city is "under Israeli occupation". However, "the day" is approaching where it will be possible to "open an embassy" in the State of Palestine. The US president's move is the result of a "Zionist and Evangelist" ideology. Today at the UN Security Council a resolution voted on changes to the Status of Jerusalem.



    07/12/2017 09:47:00 ISRAEL - USA - UN
    Jerusalem capital: world leaders slam Trump's decision

    World leaders strongly condemn the choice of the United States to recognize the holy city capital of Israel. An emergency meeting of the UN Security Council is scheduled for tomorrow. From the Saudi Arabia to Iran, from Turkey to Syria, the voice of the Muslim world rises. From Europe the invitation to resume negotiations on a two-state solution. 





    Editor's choices

    EGYPT – LEBANON
    Muslims and Christians meet in Cairo for Jerusalem, 'the cause of causes'

    Fady Noun

    A conference was held on 16-17 January at al-Azhar. Many prominent figures from Lebanon took part, including the Maronite Patriarch Bechara Al-Rahi. The Arab world is divided between "complicit passivity" and "noisy but ineffective speeches". For a former Lebanese premier, coordinated actions are needed to ensure greater efficacy on behalf of Jerusalem’s "pluralistic identity " and "religious freedom". Card Al-Rahi called for joint prayers, Islamic-Christian interfaith solidarity in the Arab world, and support for the Palestinians.


    CHINA
    Yunnan: Christians accused of membership in an apocalyptic sect get up to 13 years in prison



    The Three Grades of Servants cult, an underground pseudo-Protestant sect founded in Henan, is especially strong in the countryside. Those convicted claim they are just ordinary Christians and know nothing about the sect. Defense lawyers have been threatened with loss of their license to practice.


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