Trump officials to visit Mideast this month for peace plan push

White House officials set to rally support for Middle East peace plan

"The malicious intentions of this administration were reiterated by US President Donald Trump in his State of the Union speech to Congress in which he stressed continuing with the policy of absolute bias toward Israel", said the statement carried on official Palestinian news agency Wafa.

The Trump administration has delayed multiple times the launch of a proposed Israeli-Palestinian peace plan, though officials still say they still intend to present one.

White House senior adviser Jared Kushner and other administration officials are headed to the Middle East later this month to brief diplomats in at least five countries on the economic section of a United States proposal for peace between Israel and the Palestinians.

"They're not going to support the economic plan without making sure they also support the political plan, and we recognise that". "This is a very important part of the overall equation".

The newspaper added that the visit "will focus only on the economic issues, according to the White House, and not on the political, diplomatic and security aspects of the plan".

Trump has long promised to try and reach the so-called "deal of the century" to end the long-simmering Israeli-Palestinian conflict, but his efforts have derailed since his decision to transfer the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem.

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The plan revolves around a proposal that foresees major infrastructure and industrial work, particularly in the besieged Gaza Strip.

The Palestinians have refused to meet with the United States to discuss peace overtures since December 2017, when Trump announced the move and declared he would recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

The current thinking among White House officials is that the peace plan will be unveiled sometime after Israel holds elections on April 9 that will decide the fate of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

On Thursday, Kushner is set to take part in a discussion on how to end the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in the Polish capital Warsaw. Kushner is not visiting Israel on this trip, the officials said.

Palestinian President Mohammed Abbas refuses to negotiate with the United States after President Trump chose to move the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem and declare the Holy City as Israel's capital. "His people deserve nothing less", one official said.

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