Bethlehem / PNN
The Palestinian leadership in Ramallah have received via a third party the initial outlines for the forthcoming U.S. peace plan, dubbed ‘the deal of a century’, according to a report by pan-Arab paper Al-Hayat released on Sunday.
The revised initiative would transfer towns and villages belonging to Palestinians and Arab Israelis to the outskirts of East Jerusalem in order to facilitate the creation of a ‘new’ holy city – a ‘Palestinian corridor to the Al-Aqsa Mosque’.
‘Israel built its own holy city by developing a group of villages and building new neighborhoods,’ cites the report’s source. ‘The Palestinians can do the same thing and build their sanctuary’.
The proposed new capital would be built in the town of Abu Dis, on the outskirts of Jerusalem.
The Old City and its surrounding neighborhoods, including Silwan, Sheikh Jarrah and the Mount of Olives would fall under the jurisdiction of the proposed new capital. As would the towns of Beit Hanina, Shu’fat, Ras Khamis, and Kafr Asb in East Jerusalem.
The revised two-state solution would see the future-state of Palestine assuming control of roughly half of the West Bank, the entirety of the Gaza Strip, and the aforementioned villages and townships of Jerusalem.
Security and border control would remain under Israeli jurisdiction for the time being while the issue of settlements in the occupied territories remains unaddressed.
According to the report, Palestine President Mahmoud Abbas has presented his own peace plan to the U.S. via an intermediary, though it was reportedly rejected.
The plan presented by Abbas would foresee the creation of the Palestinian state along the 1967-borders with Israel being permitted to annex its existing settlements.
Later this month, President Abbas will brief the UN Security Council which meets monthly to discuss issues in the Middle East.
Abbas will assume the position of the Palestinian representative in what has been dubbed a highly unusual move which comes at a time of heightened tensions and rhetoric stemming from the U.S and its representative to the UN, Nikki Haley.
Haley was quoted as having criticized Abbas for lacking courage, and ‘the will to seek peace’.
The council will convene on 20 February.