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January 29, 2020 10:22 am

Democratic Presidential Candidates Dismiss Release of Mideast Peace Initiative

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US Democratic presidential candidate Mayor Pete Buttigieg delivers remarks on foreign policy and national security, in Bloomington, Indiana, US, June 11, 2019. Photo: REUTERS/John Sommers II. – As if on cue, 2020 Democratic presidential candidates dismissed details of the peace plan announced on Tuesday by US President Donald Trump. Right away, they jumped on positions set forth in the 180-page document aimed at resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict—or at least, to jump-start the process into action.

“The United States can bring unequaled leadership to resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, but we must use that leadership to promote a just and durable agreement. Any acceptable peace deal must be consistent with international law and multiple UN resolutions,” tweeted Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.). “It must end the Israeli occupation and enable Palestinian self-determination in an independent state of their own alongside a secure Israel. Trump’s so-called ‘peace deal’ doesn’t come close, and will only perpetuate the conflict. It is unacceptable.”

“Trump’s ‘peace plan’ is a rubber stamp for annexation and offers no chance for a real Palestinian state. Releasing a plan without negotiating with Palestinians isn’t diplomacy, it’s a sham. I will oppose unilateral annexation in any form—and reverse any policy that supports it,” tweeted Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.).

“This president’s Mideast ‘Deal of the Century,’ like so much else he’s done in foreign policy, makes complex situations worse. Peace requires both parties at the table. Not a political green light to the leader of one for unilateral annexation,” tweeted former South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg.

“A peace plan requires two sides to come together. This is a political stunt that could spark unilateral moves to annex territory and set back peace even more. I’ve spent a lifetime working to advance the security & survival of a Jewish and democratic Israel. This is not the way,” tweeted former US Vice President Joe Biden.

Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg offered a more measured, though critical, reaction.

“A negotiated two-state solution is critical to Israel’s and the Palestinians’ long-term security and well-being, and it is good that President Trump’s plan affirms that,” he said in a statement posted on his Twitter page. “Every peace plan deserves a chance, but any viable plan requires buy-in from both sides, and over the past three years, the President has done nothing but hurt the US’s position as an effective broker in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. As this process unfolds, it is critical that neither party take unilateral steps that could trigger instability and violence.”

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