The Palestine Liberation Organization has responded to remarks Wednesday by President Donald Trump at the White House with a warning that yes, there is indeed another alternative to the two-state solution.
PLO spokesperson Nasser al-Kidwa told reporters at a news conference held in the Palestinian Authority government headquarters in Ramallah on Thursday the alternative is “painful bloodshed.”
“I’m looking at two-state and one-state, and I like the one that both parties like,” the president said. “I’m very happy with the one that both parties like. I can live with either one. I thought for a while the two-state looked like it may be the easier of the two. But honestly, if Bibi and if the Palestinians — if Israel and the Palestinians are happy, I’m happy with the one they like the best.”
Al-Kidwah equated the president’s remarks with the outright rejection of the peace process in general, rather than the attempt to formulate a new approach to peace, as it was clearly intended to be.
The Hamas terrorist organization that rules Gaza also accused the Trump administration of “disregarding” Arabs in the Palestinian Authority. Hamas called on those residents to unite in a struggle against what it called the “challenges” facing them. The terror group also called on the Palestinian Authority to cancel its commitments under the Oslo Accords, and its recognition of the State of Israel.
The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine – another faction in the PLO – also accused the president and the prime minister of trying to destroy what it called “the issue” of the Palestinian Authority.
Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas also met this week with CIA director Mike Pompeo, along with PA security chief, Majed Faraj and former PA chief negotiator Saeb Erekat, who is now an executive board member of the PLO, which is also run by Abbas. A number of other senior Palestinian Authority officials were at the meeting as well.
Just a day before the president’s joint news conference with Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, a PLO representative spoke with White House officials to warn Trump “not to walk away from the two-state solution.” The warning came in response to remarks by a senior White House official who had said earlier in the week that the United States will no longer impose any “solution” to peace on either party, but rather would support whatever deal the two sides reach together.
Hanan Ashrawi, a senior member of the Palestine Liberation Organization said, “If the Trump Administration rejects this policy it would be destroying the chances for peace and undermining American interests, standing and credibility abroad,” according to the A-Sharq Al-Awsat English-language news site.
“Accommodating the most extreme and irresponsible elements in Israel and in the White House is no way to make responsible foreign policy,” she added.