Battle at the United Nations over Trump's Middle East plan

Jared Kushner, in Washington, February 4.
Jared Kushner, in Washington, February 4. OLIVIER DOULIERY / AFP

A battle of influence and corridor bidding took place throughout the day at the UN, Thursday, February 6, as diplomats negotiate a resolution brought by Palestine, in response to the American "peace plan" designed by Jared Kushner. They would like to be able to put it to a vote at the Security Council on Tuesday February 11, when Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas is visiting New York.

It is in this context that Jared Kushner, the son-in-law of the American president, Donald Trump, decided to invite to lunch the 15 members of the Council, Thursday, at the UN mission of the United States, a building reputed to be bunkérisé, located right across from the UN headquarters. A studious lunch, which was to allow the Americans to make their views heard, in a more discreet framework than that of the United Nations. And perhaps even convince 14 ambassadors, a priori fiercely attached to the two-state solution and the resolutions voted at the UN, of the merits of this plan presented as "The deal of the century".

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But on Thursday morning, information leaked from the Palestinian side: it is said that former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert will be with Mahmoud Abbas on Tuesday February 11, in New York, for a press conference. The man has already publicly opposed the American plan validated by his successor, Benjamin Netanyahu, but the symbol is strong and could even become a historic photograph. By announcing this Israeli support, the Palestinians wanted to ensure that they could not be blamed for refusing everything as a whole. This is how the race for whoever claims to be the most flexible on the dossier is launched for a few hours.

From the American breakfast, nothing transpires at the start – as ambassadors as they are, the members of the council were summoned to hand over their cell phones. But in the few minutes they cross the avenue and hurry to arrive at the afternoon council meeting, when the bell has already sounded, we understand that the son-in-law of Donald Trump knew how to find the words .

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"Basis for negotiation"

Mr. Kushner "Said that this text was a basis for negotiation, said, still surprised, a diplomat usually very picky about the respect of international law – which ignores the first public draft of the American plan. They are ready to negotiate with the Palestinians. "

"He told us that he wanted to achieve a" win-win "situation, this is a reasonable position, confides another ambassador deemed more sensitive to Israeli arguments. The Americans are working on their own draft resolution, and have said there will be other meetings like these. They understood that the Security Council must be involved. "


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