US sources: Progress in Middle East peace process will take time

Bethlehem/PNN/Munjed Jadou

White House senior adviser Jared Kushner and US President envoy Jason Greenblatt who met separately on Wednesday night with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah and with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in West Jerusalem, said that pushing forward the peace process would take more time.

A brief statement to the White House Press Office that was distributed by the US consulate in Jerusalem said that: “The United States officials and Palestinian leadership underscored that forging peace will take time and stressed the importance of doing everything possible to create an environment conducive to peacemaking.”

According to Palestinian sources, this statement was an American acknowledgment Kushner and Greenblatt’s tour  failed to convince the parties, especially the Israelis, to advance the peace process.

Statement from the office of the U.S, Press Secretary office  in White  House came after Senior Advisor to the President Jared Kushner, Assistant to the President and Special Representative for International Negotiations Jason Greenblatt, and United States Consul General in Jerusalem Donald Blome met today in Ramallah with President Mahmoud Abbas of the Palestinian Authority and his senior advisors.

Official statement said that :the two sides had a productive meeting and reaffirmed their commitment to advancing President Trump’s goal of a genuine and lasting peace between the Israelis and the Palestinians that enhances stability in the region.”

“Kushner and Greenblatt discussed with President Abbas priorities for the Palestinians and potential next steps, acknowledging the need for economic opportunities for Palestinians and major investments in the Palestinian economy,” statement added.

The Spokesman for the Palestinian Presidency , Nabil Abu Rudeina, said that the meeting discussed all the issues in a clear and in-depth manner, addressing all final status issues, such as refugees and prisoners.

He added that President Abbas affirmed during the meeting the principle of a two-state solution for the establishment of an independent Palestinian state with East Jerusalem as its capital on the 1967 borders.

Abu Rudeina said the president renewed his commitment to achieving a just and comprehensive peace based on international legitimacy resolutions and the Arab peace initiative.

On the other hand, Israeli Newspaper YNET reported that according to Palestinian sources :”The meeting was tense because the Palestinians refused to stop the salaries of the prisoners and asked them to freeze Israeli settlement in the West Bank and Jerusalem.

Before meeting Abbas  Kushner, Greenblatt, and U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman met  in Jerusalem with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his senior advisors.