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Trump Envoy Says Palestinian Unity Government ‘Must Commit to Nonviolence’, Recognize Israel

October 2, 2017 Peace and Conflict

Will Trump achieve Middle East peacel? U.S. President Donald Trump (left) meets Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (right). Illustrative. Photo courtesy of Kobi Gideon (GPO)

While the United States is welcoming the efforts of the Palestinian factions to re-unite under the leadership of the supposedly moderate Palestinian Authority, they still have expectations as to what that new Palestinian government should do. In a statement published on Monday by the American Envoy on the Middle East peace process Jason Greenblatt to Twitter, the representative wrote that the U.S. “stresses that any Palestinian government must unambiguously and explicitly commit to nonviolence.”

Greenblatt, the White House Special Representative for International Negotiations, said the Palestinians also must commit to “recognition of the State of Israel, acceptance of previous agreements and obligations between the parties, and peaceful negotiations.”

Given that the Hamas terrorist group is the counterparty to the latest reconciliation process with the Fatah party that leads the P.A., those American expectations seem likely to be disappointed. Hamas has repeatedly refused to halt its violent attacks on Israel or to recognize the State of Israel.

Greenblatt already knows about Hamas’ view of Israel. In a separate tweet posted to another Twitter feed last week, Greenblatt expressed horror at the latest terror attack in Israel and then tweeted, “Shame on Hamas & others who praised the attack. All must stand against terror!”

Hamas and Fatah had a violent split in 2007 in which Hamas took over the Gaza Strip in a bloody coup. The sides have tried and failed to reconcile since then multiple times.

Regarding the current reunification process between Hamas and Fatah, Greenblatt wrote in his official statement on Monday that the U.S. “welcomes efforts to create the conditions for the Palestinian Authority to fully assume its responsibilities in Gaza.” He also noted the Americans “will be watching these developments closely” while also “pressing forward” with the P.A., Israel, and international donors to “try to improve the humanitarian situation in Gaza.”

(By Joshua Spurlock, www.themideastupdate.com, October 2, 2017)

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