Trump asks Abbas for 'more time' to work out peace talks formula: report
AP Photo/Evan Vucci
United States President Donald Trump asked Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas to give his administration more time to thrash out a path to restarting the moribund Israeli-Palestinian peace process, according to a report in Haaretz newspaper on Sunday.
Trump met Abbas on Wednesday in New York on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly.
Citing US and Palestinian sources, the paper reported that Trump asked the Palestinian Authority President for more time and to refrain from taking any measures that might throw up obstacles to the process.
Palestinian officials told Haaretz that they expect a position paper or framework proposal to be tabled within a few weeks, however an unnamed senior White House official refused to put a timeline on the process.
Since coming to power Trump has assigned his son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner and his former lawyer Jason Greenblatt to talk to both Israelis and Palestinians in order to map out a way of reviving on-and-off peace negotiations, which were last dropped in 2014 when ex-Secretary of State John Kerry's relentless shuttle diplomacy failed to bear fruit.
Both Greenblatt and Kushner have been frequent visitors to both Jerusalem and Ramallah -- along with several other Middle Eastern capitals -- in recent months.
When Kushner last visited Ramallah in August, he reportedly indicated to Abbas that a document would be ready within four months, however a US official denied the report.
In a newspaper interview before his UN appearance, Abbas said that in fact Kushner had promised a plan within four weeks.
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