Alwaght- A senior Palestinian leader rebuked on Wednesday US President’s threat to cut aid to the Palestinian Authority, calling his tweets “blackmail.”
"We will not be blackmailed," Palestinian Legislator Hanan Ashrawi said in a statement on Wednesday in response to Donald Trump's tweet that threatened that Washington may cut aid worth more than $300m a year to Palestinians.
The US gives Tel Aviv annual military aid of $3.1bn. Next year, that figure will increase to $3.8bn under a 10-year deal agreed by Barack Obama shortly before his presidency ended.
Trump, in a pair of tweets, said the US pays “the Palestinians HUNDRED OF MILLIONS OF DOLLARS a year and get no appreciation or respect.” “They don’t even want to negotiate a long overdue ... peace treaty with Israel,” he wrote.
Ashrawi's statement blamed Trump for damaging Palestinians' "search for peace, freedom and justice."
"President Trump has sabotaged our search for peace, freedom and justice. Now he dares to blame the Palestinians for the consequences of his own irresponsible actions," the statement reads.
Trump infuriated Palestinians and Muslims across the world when he announced late last year that the US would consider al-Quds as the capital of Israeli regime and move its embassy there.
Tel Aviv regime says the whole al-Quds belongs to Jewish state, but the international community views the ancient city’s eastern sector as occupied land and the Palestinians consider it their future capital.
Following Trump's provocative decision, Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas said the announcement had destroyed Trump’s credibility as a peace broker, calling the move “a declaration of withdrawal from the role it has played in the peace process.”
Tuesday’s tweets mark a tacit admission by Trump that his decision to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to al-Quds has thrown a wrench into his administration’s plans to restart the peace process between Israelis and Palestinians, which he had dubbed “the ultimate deal.”