White House Denies Kushner Said Settlement Freeze Could Bring Down Netanyahu

Palestinian schoolgirls chat as they head to school on the first day of a new academic year at a United Nations-run school at the Al Shatee refugee camp in Gaza City

White House senior adviser Jared Kushner is part of a delegation that traveled to the Middle East for peace talks, the Trump administration said Tuesday.

Kushner, who is also US President Donald Trump's son-in-law, is quoted explaining to the PA leader that a settlement freeze could lead to a breakdown of the Netanyahu-led government. "So we leave it up to them to be able to work that through".

Israel's Haaretz reported that Israeli police detained the driver and opened an investigation to the incident, however, the victim's family is doubtful whether the legal process will produce any substantial outcome.

When asked if the Palestinians still place hope on the efforts of the administration and the delegates' visits to the region, Abbas' deputy answered, "You could say that we don't have any more delusions regarding the fact that their (the Americans') policies will lead to some sort of result".

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas will hold talks in Ankara on August 28 amid calls for the resumption of negotiations between the Palestinians and Israelis to end the conflict.

All of which suggest that the meeting in Ramallah on Thursday was as terse and unproductive as the one in June had been, but both sides - and possibly the Netanyahu government as well - prefer to smear a heap of lipstick on this pig.

But Palestinian leaders note that the White House has not even said clearly whether its focus will be a two-state solution to the conflict, which has been longstanding USA policy.

It's not an uncommon threat for the Palestinian leadership to make.

According to a report in the Al-Hayat newspaper, no significant progress was made during the Thursday Abbas-Kushner meeting.

An 8-year-old Palestinian girl was killed on Saturday after being struck by an Israeli vehicle in the Nablus district of the nerthern occupied West Bank, according to Israeli sources.

Shapiro, now a fellow at the Institute for National Security Studies think-tank in Tel Aviv, said the focus should instead be on short-term goals such as improving the Palestinian economy in order to keep the possibility of a two-state solution alive. "Every time they repeatedly stressed to me how much they believe and are committed to a two-state solution and a halt to construction in the settlements".

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