Devil in the Details

US President Trump announces his long-awaited peace plan, with Israeli PM Netanyahu by his side

 

What the Trump peace plan actually says

 

US President Donald Trump released his Administration’s long-awaited peace plan on January 28, describing it as a “realistic two-state solution” to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Following a festive announcement from the East Room of the White House, the US Administration released a 50-page document which details the previously unseen political facet of the plan, along with the economic portion that was introduced in Bahrain last year.

Below are key excerpts from the “Peace to Prosperity” plan:

• The plan says that Israel is not legally bound to provide the Palestinians with 100 per cent of pre-1967 territory, a departure from previous plans which called for near one-to-one land swaps.

• The plan envisions a high-speed transportation link that will enable efficient movement between the West Bank and Gaza, crossing over or under Israel’s sovereign territory.

• Israel will benefit from having secure and recognised borders. It will not have to uproot any settlements, and will incorporate the vast majority of Israeli settlements into contiguous Israeli territory.

• Approximately 97% of Israelis in the West Bank will be incorporated into contiguous Israeli territory, and approximately 97% of Palestinians in the West Bank will be incorporated into contiguous Palestinian territory.

• Land swaps will provide the future State of Palestine with land reasonably comparable in size to the territory of pre-1967 West Bank and Gaza.

• Fifteen Israeli enclaves – currently isolated settlements deep in the West Bank – located inside contiguous Palestinian territory will become part of the State of Israel and be connected to it through an effective transportation system.

• The Jordan Valley, which is critical for Israel’s national security, will be under Israeli sovereignty.

• Subject to agreement by the parties, the deal proposes redrawing the border to allow for the ten Arab Israeli villages in the so-called Triangle just west of the Green Line to be included inside the State of Palestine.

• The security barrier between Israel and the West Bank will be realigned to match the new borders.

• The borders drawn in the plan’s map shall be without prejudice to individual claims of title or rights of possession traditionally litigated within the Israeli judicial system.

Jerusalem

• The plan praises Israel for safeguarding religious sites and calls for maintaining the status quo at them, particularly at the Temple Mount.

• However, in the next paragraph, the plan says that people of all faiths should be able to worship at the Temple Mount/Haram al-Sharif. Under the current conditions of the status quo, Jews are not allowed to pray at the compound.

• The plan says that a division of Jerusalem would be inconsistent with the policy statements of the Jerusalem Embassy Act of 1995 of the United States.

• “While a physical division of the city must be avoided, a security barrier currently exists that does not follow the municipal boundary and that already separates Arab neighbourhoods in Jerusalem from the rest of the neighbourhoods in the city. This physical barrier should remain in place and should serve as a border between the capitals of the two parties.”

• “Jerusalem will remain the sovereign capital of the State of Israel, and it should remain an undivided city. The sovereign capital of the State of Palestine should be in the section of East Jerusalem located in all areas east and north of the existing security barrier, including Kafr Aqab, the eastern part of Shuafat and Abu Dis, and could be named Al Quds or another name as determined by the State of Palestine.”

• The plan would allow the Arab residents of Israel’s capital, Jerusalem, beyond the 1949 armistice lines but inside the existing security barrier, to choose one of three options: Become citizens of the State of Israel, become citizens of the State of Palestine or retain their status as permanent residents in Israel.

• The embassy of the United States to the State of Israel will remain in Jerusalem. Following the signing of the Israeli-Palestinian peace agreement, the embassy of the United States to the State of Palestine will be in Al Quds, at a location to be chosen by the United States, in agreement with the State of Palestine.

Security

• The plan aims to achieve mutual recognition of the State of Israel as the nation-state of the Jewish people, and the State of Palestine as the nation-state of the Palestinian people, in each case with equal civil rights for all citizens within each state. The United States would only ask Israel to make compromises that it believes will make Israel and its people more secure in the short and long term.

• Although each party will be in charge of setting zoning rules and issuing building permits in their own countries, zoning and planning of the State of Palestine in the areas adjacent to the border between the State of Israel and the State of Palestine, including without limitation, the border between Jerusalem and Al Quds, will be subject to the State of Israel’s overriding security responsibility.

• The State of Palestine shall be fully demilitarised and remain so.

• The State of Palestine will have security forces capable of maintaining internal security and preventing terror attacks within the State of Palestine and against Israel, Jordan and Egypt.

• As a complementary measure to the bilateral security coordination, a security review committee will be established that will consist of security representatives appointed by the State of Israel, the State of Palestine and the United States.

Refugees

This plan envisions three options for Palestinian refugees seeking a permanent place of residence:

1) Absorption into the State of Palestine (subject to the limitations provided below);

2) Local integration in current host countries (subject to those countries’ consent);

3) The acceptance of 5,000 refugees each year, for up to ten years (50,000 total refugees), in individual Organisation of Islamic Cooperation member countries who agree to participate in Palestinian refugee resettlement (subject to those individual countries’ agreement).

Conditions for Palestinian statehood

• The Israeli-Palestinian Peace Agreement will provide that the parties recognise the State of Palestine as the nation-state of the Palestinian people and the State of Israel as the nation-state of the Jewish people.

• The Palestinian Authority or another national or international body acceptable to the State of Israel is in full control of Gaza; Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad, and all other militias and terror organisations in Gaza are disarmed; and Gaza is fully demilitarised.

• If efforts to return all Israeli captives and the remains of Israeli soldiers have not previously been successful, then upon the signing of the Israeli-Palestinian Peace Agreement, all Israeli captives and remains must be returned.

• If Hamas is to play any role in a Palestinian government, it must commit to the path of peace with the State of Israel.

• The Israeli-Palestinian peace agreement will provide for the release of Palestinian prisoners and administrative detainees held in Israeli prisons, except (i) those convicted of murder or attempted murder, (ii) those convicted of conspiracy to commit murder (in each case murder includes murder by terrorism) and (iii) Israeli citizens.

• Significant improvements for the people in Gaza will not occur until there is a ceasefire with Israel, the full demilitarisation of Gaza, and a governance structure that allows the international community to safely and comfortably put new money into investments that will not be destroyed by predictable future conflicts.

• The Palestinians shall have ended all programs, including school curricula and textbooks, that serve to incite or promote hatred or antagonism towards its neighbours, or which compensate or incentivise criminal or violent activity.

• The PA shall refrain from any attempt to join any international organisation without the consent of the State of Israel.

• The PA shall take no action, and shall dismiss all pending actions, against the State of Israel, the United States and any of their citizens before the International Criminal Court and all other tribunals.

• The PA shall take all necessary actions to immediately terminate the paying of salaries to terrorists serving sentences in Israeli prisons.

Israel will in the interim:

In areas of the West Bank that are not contemplated by this Vision to be part of the State of Israel, Israel will not:

1) Build any new settlement towns, expand existing settlements or advance plans to build in those areas;

2) Expand any of the Israeli enclaves referred to in Section 4 or advance plans to expand those enclaves in those areas beyond their current footprint;

3) Demolish any structure existing as of the date of this plan and secure the necessary legislative and/or legal decisions to ensure such an outcome.

© Times of Israel (www.timeseofisrael.com), reprinted by permission, all rights reserved.