Israel's United Nations ambassador to make pitch for recognizing Jerusalem as capital

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Prior to the dinner, Israel's ambassador to the United Nations, Dani Dayan, tweeted: "As the son of a former Ambassador of Israel to Guatemala and as Israel's Consul General in NY I will be honored to participate and thank President Jimmy Morales".

Gabriel warned Israel against being lulled into indecision because of the warm embrace of the Trump administration, which recently recognized Jerusalem as Israel's capital and has been critical of the Palestinian leadership.

U.S. President Donald Trump declined to give a timeline for releasing the U.S. plan for peace between the Israelis and the Palestinians, telling an Israeli newspaper that he is not convinced that either party is committed to the process. "So we are just going to have to see what happens".

Trump's ambassador to Israel, David Friedman, has in the past been a supporter of settlements in the West Bank.

"Russia and Putin will have an important role in this matter, including launching an global peace conference and several important issues that require consultation with all relevant parties until we achieve the interest of the Palestinian people", said Khalidi. This is namely liquidating the Palestinian cause, refraining from giving the Palestinian people their rights back and taking important issues, particularly the Jerusalem and refugees issues, off the table. This way, Jerusalem can indeed become the joint capital for Palestine and Israel. "No, I am not somebody who believes that going forward with these settlements is a good thing for peace".

Truck driver strike in Gaza in 14 February 2018
Truck driver strike in Gaza in 14 February 2018

Despite his reservations about Israeli policy in Judea and Samaria, President Trump praised Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, calling him a "terrific leader".

"I said that I would like to be able to do it in the first year. But it was a very important pledge that I made and I fulfilled my pledge". I have been thanked and in some cases not thanked, to be 100 percent honest about it. "I can understand why many other presidents bailed on their promise because tremendous pressure was put on them not to do it", Trump said, adding that "the lobbying against it was tremendous".

He said that "both sides would have to make serious compromises to reach a peace agreement".

Trump said he was not sure whether there would be peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians, but said, "I think it is very foolish for the Palestinians, and I also think it would be very foolish for the Israelis, if they don't make a deal".

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