the two men shake hands in front of a wall map
Jason Greenblatt, appointed by Trump to bring Palestinians and Israelis to the negotiation table, left, meeting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during a visit to Jerusalem, March 13, 2017. (Photo/JTA-Government Press Office)

Trump wants ‘conflict-ending’ deal between Israelis and Palestinians

President Donald Trump is seeking “a conflict-ending settlement” for Israelis and Palestinians, his spokesman said ahead of Trump’s meeting with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas.

The statement Wednesday by Sean Spicer, who was confirming the May 3 visit, is an indication that Trump is determined to extract a deal from the two sides.

“They will use the visit to reaffirm the commitment of both the United States and the Palestinian leadership to pursuing and ultimately concluding a conflict-ending settlement between the Palestinians and Israel,” Spicer said in his opening remarks at the daily news briefing.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has said he wants a peace deal, but Cabinet officials to Netanyahu’s right favor unilateral actions, including annexing portions of the West Bank, that would stop well short of a final status deal.

Trump, who hosted Netanyahu in February at the White House, retreated from an explicit U.S. endorsement of the two-state solution — U.S. policy for 15 years — but also surprised Netanyahu by asking him publicly to slow settlement expansion for a period.

One of Trump’s top foreign policy advisers, Jason Greenblatt, has spent time in the region in an intensive canvassing of the principals ahead of reviving peace talks.

JTA

JTA news agency