Following the announcement of US President’s Middle East plan, which aims to grant Jerusalem to Israel as well as recognising Israeli sovereignty over Palestinian territory in the occupied West Bank, hundreds of Palestinians have taken to the streets in Ramallah and the Gaza strip.
US President, Donald Trump, made the announcement accompanied with Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu where he described it as the ‘Deal of the Century’. Aljazeera has described the deal as ‘a new Balfour’, invoking the initial British pledge in 1917 which established Israel. The declaration also led to the Nakba, meaning ‘The Catastrophe’ which forced over 750,000 Palestinians into exile.
Under the current plan, Israel would annex territory which it has illegally occupied in the West Bank and the Jordan Valley would also be placed under Israeli sovereignty. This would mean that over 97 percent of Israeli’s residing in the West Bank would be integrated into Israel. Whereas the “Triangle Communities” which are 10 predominately Palestinians towns may be granted to Palestine. Al Jazeera estimates that 257,000 Palestinians citizens of Israel could find themselves living outside of Israel.
In 2018, Israel passed the Basic Law, also known as the Nation State law which specifies that Israel is a Jewish state.
As part of the deal, which the Palestinians have rejected, the US has promised $50bn in investment into Palestine.
Ziyad Abu Zayyad, Former Palestinian Authority minister, has rejected the plan stating:
"We will never give up Jerusalem as our capital, nor the Jordan Valley and areas in the West Bank as part of our state”.
As part of the deal, the plan calls for the complete demilitarisation of Palestine and disarmament of groups such as Hamas and the Islamic Jihad. In its place, Israel would erect security to control all international crossings into Palestine and continue surveillance of Palestine reliant on drones.
In defiance of previous UN resolutions, Palestinian refugees and their descendants would not have a right of return to Israel. In addition, Palestine’s refugee status would cease to exist and the United Nations's agency for Palestinian refugees would be terminated.
The plan further maintains that the Palestinian school curriculum would be subject to review by the US and Israel as a prerequisite for Palestinian self determination. The plan states;
"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,"
Read Al Jazeera reporting here.
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