US President Donald Trump shakes hands with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas during their meeting at the presidential headquarters in the West Bank town of Bethlehem, May 23, 2017.
(photo credit: REUTERS)
A delegation of five Palestinian officials is expected to meet with US President Donald Trump’s administration in Washington later this or next month to discuss reviving the peace process, a senior Fatah official said on Sunday.
“We have ongoing contacts with the administration and expect the delegation will go to America after the holiday,” Azzam al-Ahmad, a Fatah Central Committee member, said in a telephone interview, referring to the Eid al-Fitr holiday that follows Ramadan, which will most likely fall this year on June 26 or June 27.
According to the senior Fatah official, Trump asked Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas during his visit to Bethlehem on May 23 to dispatch a delegation of five Palestinian officials to the American capital to continue talks about renewing the peace process.
Ahmad added that the delegation has not been finalized, but will likely include Palestinian officials who accompanied Abbas during his visit to the White House on May 3.
Top Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat, PA Intelligence chief Majid Faraj, Palestine Investment Fund Chairman Muhammad Mustafa, PA Deputy Prime Minister Ziad Abu Amr and Abbas’s diplomatic adviser Majdi al-Khalidi were some of the officials who came with the PA president to the White House.
Trump has said repeatedly that he would like to bring about a deal between Israel and the Palestinians.
Trump-Abbas meeting in Washington. (Reuters)
“I am committed to trying to achieve a peace agreement between the Israelis and the Palestinians,” Trump said last month in Bethlehem. “I intend to do everything I can to help achieve that goal.”
However, the American president has not outlined a vision for how he plans to bridge the differences between the two parties in order to negotiate a deal, except for saying that both sides will have to make concessions.