Kushner wants 'pragmatic' solution on Palestinian refugees

Kushner wants 'pragmatic' solution on Palestinian refugees”

But in a conference call with Arab media, Kushner appeared to favor normalization of the status of Palestinian refugees who fled or were forced out of Israel when the Jewish state was created in 1948, as well as their descendants.

Jared Kushner, President Trump's son-in-law and senior adviser, blasted the Palestinian leadership for acting "hysterical and stupid" after refusing to participate in the peace conference in Bahrain.

Kushner, briefing reporters on a conference call, also hints the USA peace plan might call on Palestinian refugees to permanently settle where they are rather than return to lands now in Israel.

The White House likened the deal to a Marshall Plan for Palestinians and said it was an "opportunity of the century". The plan includes a $50 billion pay package, in what critics have interpreted as an attempt to trade economic prosperity for meaningful political progress.

"The Palestinians will only accept to sit with the American administration on basis of respecting three issues: Jerusalem as occupied territory, refugees issue and worldwide legitimacy", noted Abbas.

The senior USA official voiced his belief that Abbas wants peace, but said "certain people around him are very uncomfortable with the way we've approached this, and their natural reaction is to attack and say insane things" that are not constructive.

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For decades, Israel has been in conflict with the Palestinians, who have been seeking diplomatic recognition for their independent state on the territories of the West Bank, including East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip.

Asked by a Lebanese reporter whether the United States hoped Arab countries hosting Palestinian refugees would accept them permanently in exchange for funding, Kushner declined to answer directly, saying the matter would be addressed later.

The president said the U.S. President Donald Trump's ideas for peace, also known as the "deal of the century", will be foiled, "just like the Manama workshop failed".

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has long suggested a demographic tradeoff between Jewish and Palestinian refugees.

"I think that the people of Lebanon would love to see a resolution to this issue, one that is fair", Kushner claimed regarding the Palestinian refugees in Lebanon.

The Trump administration has called for the 70-year-old United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees to be dismantled, with its work taken over by host countries.

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