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    12-May-2020

Pompeo to Convey a Message About Freezing West Bank Annexation

 

Asharq Al-Awsat

 

Senior sources within US Jewish organizations revealed that President Donald Trump’s administration was reconsidering its stance over supporting Israel’s decision to annex areas in the occupied West Bank, stressing that more room should be given to diplomacy.
 
 
The sources noted that US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who will arrive in Tel Aviv on Wednesday, will convey a message in this regard from Trump to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his partner in the upcoming government, Knesset Speaker Benny Gantz, and will try to persuade them to abandon annexation plans at this moment.
 
 
Sources in Tel Aviv said on Monday that Netanyahu attached great importance to Pompeo’s visit, “in order to understand the reality and extent of the change in the American position.”
 
 
This would be Pompeo’s first external visit since the outbreak of the coronavirus.
 
 
A report published by Maariv newspaper and written by its political correspondent in the US, Shlomo Shamir, quoted officials of Jewish organizations who had held meetings at the White House, as saying that the US administration “sees at this stage that a unilateral decision by the Israeli government to annex lands in the West Bank, would constitute a blow to President Trump’s plan to settle the conflict in the Middle East, known as the Century Deal.”
 
 
Meanwhile, sources in Tel Aviv revealed on Monday that the Iranian and Syrian issues would occupy a large part in Pompeo’s talks with Netanyahu and Gantz.
 
 
This assertion confirms a previous statement by the US State Department, which noted that Pompeo’s visit to Israel would be devoted to discussing security issues pertaining to the Iranian role in the region.
 
 

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