US envoy hints Israeli-Palestinian peace plan could be delayed

Middle East envoy said Trump administration’s much-awaited peace plan might be delayed until early November.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas stands next to new Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh and other members of the new government during a swearing in ceremony, in Ramallah in the Israeli-occupied West
The Palestinian leadership has rejected the so-called 'deal of the century' [Mohamad Torokman/Reuters]

US President Donald Trump‘s Middle East envoy has hinted at a further delay until early November to the unveiling of a White House peace plan for the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

“I think the logic would still dictate that if we wanted to wait until a new (Israeli) government is formed, we really do have to wait until potentially as late as November 6,” Jason Greenblatt said in a Jerusalem Post interview on Sunday.

The Trump administration had already delayed its presentation of the plan until after Israel’s April 9 polls, which failed to yield a government and a new election is scheduled for September 17.

A new government will potentially come into the office in early November, following the election of a potential prime minister and negotiations to form a coalition.

“It’s no secret that the Israeli elections have certainly put a new thought into our head,” Greenblatt said, in a video of the New York Times interview published online.

“Had the elections not been called again, perhaps we would have released” details of the deal during the summer, he said.

Greenblatt recalled that the Trump administration had already delayed presentation of the deal until after the holy month of Ramadan, which ended in early June.

The Trump administration is organising a conference later this month in Bahrain on the economic aspects of the peace plan being dubbed as “the deal of the century”, which has been rejected by the Palestinians.

The Palestinian leadership is boycotting the conference and has cut ties with Washington over the Trump administration’s perceived pro-Israel bias.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has said that the US was no longer an “honest broker” in peace talks.

Source: AFP