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Senator slams US ‘Deal of the Century’ as ‘cowboy’ attempt to solve Palestinian issue

According to Russia's legislator, the plan fails to take into account the interests of the Palestinian side
Russia’s Federation Council Committee on Foreign Affairs head Konstantin Kosachev  Mikhail Tereshchenko/TASS
Russia’s Federation Council Committee on Foreign Affairs head Konstantin Kosachev
© Mikhail Tereshchenko/TASS

MOSCOW, March 3. /TASS/. The so-called Deal of the Century, proposed earlier by US President Donald Trump, virtually fails to take the legitimate interests of the Palestinian side into account at all. Furthermore, it is an attempt to solve the long-time Mideast conflict in one swoop, using "cowboy methods," Russia’s Federation Council (upper house) Committee on Foreign Affairs head Konstantin Kosachev said during his meeting Tuesday with the Hamas’ politburo head Ismail Haniya.

"We in Russia have also thoroughly studied this multi-page document. With regret, we note that the sympathies of its authors quite obviously go to only one side of the conflict — the Israeli side. This [happens] while the interests of the Palestinian side are almost not taken into account at all," Kosachev said.

There are international legal documents namely, the UN Security Council resolution, the UN General Assembly resolution, and the Arab Peace Initiative, he pointed out.

"This American project tosses aside all these [diplomatic] results, achieved by many years of diplomatic efforts, and attempts to solve the long-time Middle Eastern conflict in one swoop, using cowboy methods, so characteristic of the Americans. At least, those were our impressions from this initiative," Kosachev stated.

Russia is aware of the Arab League’s joint opinion on Trump’s deal.

"We know that [the opinion] includes straightforward mention that renewal of multilateral talks on the Middle Eastern settlement under international auspices is necessary, and, probably, the Middle East Quartet, which includes Russia, could become such an aegis," the committee head said.

The politician underscored that the Palestinian position would be much stronger during the negotiations, should it be consolidated.

"If we can somehow help the friendly Palestinian people, we are, of course, at your service, and I am talking about Russian politicians, and Russian lawmakers," Kosachev specified.

He expressed his conviction that the entire situation in the Middle East "in many regards, if not in every regard, is rooted in the unregulated Palestinian issue."

"We see how a group of Western nations, and, of course, Israel, seeks to push the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the Palestinian issue, to the background, using the so-called Iranian threat and other regional crises as a pretext. This approach, as we see it, proved itself during the preparation and the presentation of this Deal of the Century," the senator said.

About Trump’s ‘Deal of the Century’

In late January, during a joint press conference with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, US President Donald Trump, announced the key points of the so-called "Deal of the Century" — the Israeli-Palestinian peace plan, based on mutual recognition of the two states. The US suggested connecting the Gaza Strip and the West Bank with a highway, and recognized East Jerusalem as the capital of the Arab State.

At the same time, the US President called Jerusalem the ‘undivided capital’ of Israel and announced that Washington intends to recognize the Jewish settlements in the West Bank as Israeli territory. The President demanded that the Palestinians drop support for the Hamas movement, along with armed aggression in general as a precondition for the peace process. On the other hand, the US propose $50 billion worth of investment as an incentive for peace settlement.