Donald Trump, who has pledged to broker the “ultimate deal” between the Israelis and Palestinians, faces major obstacles to getting them to even negotiate as his adviser Jared Kushner arrives in Israel.

The White House says the discussions will focus on “the path to substantive Israeli-Palestinian peace talks,” combating extremism and economic and humanitarian issues in the Palestinian territories of the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Kushner’s delegation was set to meet with Israeli and then Palestinian officials separately today.

But the US has not received assurances that the two sides will talk to one another — let alone take steps to resolve the decades-long conflict. A White House official emphasised that the US is still in the initial stages of the process and has yet to formally propose a new peace dialogue.

The Palestinians’ quest for statehood is among the biggest hurdles to direct negotiations.


Read the full article by Rory Jones and Paul Sonne at The Australian (subscription only).

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