Top Trump advisor Kushner met Netanyahu, Abbas in peace push

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Jared Kushner and Jason Greenblatt's efforts to revive Israeli-Palestinian negotiations could encourage Israel to "take risks for peace", if the US shows strong support for Israel, Abraham Foxman, national director emeritus of the Anti-Defamation League, told The Algemeiner.

Jared Kushner with Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah.

"The American delegation accepted Israel's position with regard to paying salaries to prisoners", a Palestinian source told Ynet, "and described it as a means of inciting terror, demanding it be stopped".

Foxman said Israel will take actions toward peace only if the U.S.is in its corner.

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"Peace can only be achieved through a regional settlement", he noted.

Israel broke ground on a new West Bank settlement - its first in more than two decades - to house the evacuated residents of an illegal outpost.

The Israeli position is backed by the Oslo II Interim Agreement, signed in September 1995 between the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) and Israel, which strictly forbids incitement. One source at the meeting was quoted as saying that the two "sounded like representatives of Netanyahu, not honest brokers".

Most recently, on Wednesday evening, a meeting was held between Abbas and Trump's son-in-law and senior advisor Jared Kushner in the central occupied West Bank city of Ramallah to discuss reviving peace talks with Israel. Kushner's family has a long relationship with Netanyahu.

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A senior Palestinian official said Wednesday that the preparatory meeting with Greenblatt on Tuesday had also not gone well and became tense over the payments to prisoners. Earlier this month, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson walked back a statement that the PA had agreed to end its payments to terrorists' families. In its statement on the Abbas meeting, the White House said that both "United States officials and Palestinian leadership underscored that forging peace will take time and stressed the importance of doing everything possible to create an environment conducive to peacemaking".

"The meeting has deeply and clearly discussed all the permanent status issues, mainly refugees and prisoners", said PA spokesman Abu Rdineh, who added, "During the meeting, Kushner told President Abbas that President Trump is committed to reaching a serious peace deal".

A Palestinian delegation will reportedly travel to Washington, DC in July to continue talks with the Trump administration.

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