US President Donald Trump has welcomed Palestinian President Mahmud Abbas to the White House to discuss ways to resume the Palestinian-Israeli political process.
“Hopefully something terrific can come out between the Palestinians and Israel,” the US president said at a press conference in Washington D.C. on Wednesday.
Trump also said he saw a “very good chance” for peace between Israel and Palestine.
Abbas said Palestine was the only nation in the world living under occupation. He also expressed hope that Palestine and Israel can reach a comprehensive peace based on the so-called two-state solution in accordance with the borders of 1967.
“I believe that we are capable under your leadership and under your courageous stewardship and your wisdom as well as your great negotiating ability … I believe we can be partners, true partners to you, to bring about a historic peace treaty,” Abbas said. “Now, Mr. President, with you we have hope.”
The Palestinian president also said Muslims, Jews and Christians must be able to live together in the holy land.
“Mr. President, it’s about time for Israel to end its occupation of our people and of our land,” Abbas said.
Trump said he had spoken to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, adding that he would “do whatever is necessary” to reach an agreement.
At that meeting, which was held in mid-February, Trump said he would not pursue decades of American policy in favor of the so-called two-state solution in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Trump also urged Netanyahu to “hold back on settlements for a little bit.”
UN Security Council Resolution 2334 calls on Israel to “immediately and completely cease all settlement activities in the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem” al-Quds.
Over half a million Israelis live in more than 230 illegal settlements built since the 1967 Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories of the West Bank, including East Jerusalem al-Quds.
The continued expansion of Israeli settlements in occupied Palestine has created a major obstacle to the efforts to establish peace in the Middle East.
The Palestinian Authority wants the West Bank as part of a future independent Palestinian state, with East Jerusalem al-Quds as its capital.