TEL AVIV – Ahead of the U.S.-led Bahrain economic peace workshop, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’ spokesman vowed that the PA leadership would do everything to “thwart all conspiracies and workshops” aimed at resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
“The position of the president and the Palestinian leadership, which is focused on Jerusalem, the prisoners, and Palestinian identity, will thwart all the conspiracies, workshops, and meetings,” Nabil Abu Rudeineh was quoted as saying by Channel 12. “Prisoners” is a reference to Palestinian security prisoners serving in Israeli jail. The PA has come under fire for continuing it’s so-called pay-for-slay program, paying terrorist prisoners and their families a monthly stipend.
The U.S. announced its plan to unroll the economic part of its long-anticipated peace deal at a workshop in Bahrain on June 25 and 26.
The Palestinians have snubbed the Manama summit.
“Every meeting held in Bahrain or anywhere else without representation from the legitimate Palestinian leadership underscores Washington’s inability to succeed in achieving anything,” Abu Rudeineh said.
According to the spokesman, the Palestinians’ “determination” has successfully “preserved Jerusalem.”
The Palestinians will continue to “defeat collusion,” he pledged.
President Donald Trump’s special Mideast envoy on Sunday told CNN that the Bahrain summit would provide the Palestinians with the “opportunity of a generation.”
Regarding the leadership’s resolute rejection of the summit, Greenblatt said, “How sad for the Palestinians.”
“It is disheartening to see the supposed leaders of the Palestinians attack Palestinian entrepreneurs and Palestinian supporters in general for supporting a better future for their people,” he added.
“The Palestinian leadership portrays participation in the workshop as treasonous,” Greenblatt said. “That is preposterous. Supporters of this workshop want only the best for the Palestinians and the region.”
The White House on Monday announced that no Israeli government representative would be invited to take part in the Bahrain workshop, with senior administration officials saying that Israel’s attendance could harm its outcome.
A delegation from Israel’s business community, however, is expected to take part in the summit.
Last week, the White House announced that Jordan, Egypt and Morocco would participate in the conference, joining Saudi Arabia, Qatar and the UAE.
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas recently said the conference will “go to hell” along with the Trump administration’s peace plan.
“The Palestinian Authority does not recognize this conference,” Abbas said.
“Trump’s ‘deal of the century’ will go to hell, as will the economic workshop in Bahrain that the Americans intend to hold and present illusions,” he added.
“Whoever is interested in proposing a solution to the Palestinian issue should begin with a diplomatic solution.”
The PA has boycotted the U.S. since Trump formally recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s capital in December 2017.