Palestine has called on China to play an active role in the so-called Middle East peace process and back President Mahmoud Abbas’ initiative for ending the conflict with Israel, which seeks to replace the US with an international mechanism as the mediator in the decades-long confrontation.
In a post on his Facebook page on Tuesday, Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah said that he had raised the issue in a meeting with Chinese Vice President Wang Qishan in the West Bank city of Ramallah.
The talks, Hamdallah said, focused on “enhancing joint cooperation and the latest political developments, including the Israeli violations against our people and the US unilateral moves to support such violations.”
He also praised Beijing for its “continued” support for Palestine in several fields and the so-called two-state solution.
“I called China to support President Abbas’ peace initiative and to hold an international peace conference in which China will be a key sponsor,” he added.
Abbas presented his “peace” plan in an address to the United Nations Security Council back in February.
The initiative calls for holding an international peace conference with the participation of both the Palestinian and Israeli sides as well as active regional and international parties. It further underlines the need for establishing a multilateral mechanism in line with international law in a bid to settle the Palestinian issue.
Meanwhile, the Palestinian WAFA news agency reported that Hamdallah had complained during the meeting about efforts by Israel and the US to undermine Israeli-Palestinian talks and the so-called two-state solution, denouncing Tel Aviv’s illegal settlement construction activities in the occupied lands and Washington’s recognition of Jerusalem al-Quds as Israel’s “capital.”
He also urged China to exert pressure on Israel to “halt its violations and honor international laws and resolutions.”
Wang, for his part, stressed that China stands with the Palestinian people and their just cause.
Additionally on Tuesday, the Chinese official held talks with Israeli President Reuven Rivlin. He is set to co-host the 4th meeting of the China-Israel Joint Committee on Innovation Cooperation together with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
Israel lays claim to the whole Jerusalem al-Quds, but the international community views the city’s eastern sector as occupied territory and Palestinians consider it as the capital of their future state
US President Donald Trump recognized Jerusalem al-Quds as the “capital” of Israel last December and moved the American embassy to the ancient city in May.
The contentious move sparked angry reactions from Palestinians and severe criticism from the international community.
Abbas formally declared that Palestinians would no longer accept the US as a mediator to resolve the conflict because Washington was “completely biased” towards Tel Aviv.
Turning a deaf ear to Palestine’s objections, the Trump administration has been busy drawing up its own “peace” plan, which it calls “the deal of the century.” It is yet to unveil the proposal, which is reported to be hugely pro-Tel Aviv.
Palestinians have already rejected Trump’s plan, with Abbas calling it “the slap of the century.”
‘France gives ultimatum to US’
Separately on Tuesday, Israeli media reported that Alon Ushpiz, the foreign ministry’s political director, had told the parliament that if Trump does not present his plan for the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, France’s President Emmanuel Macron will put forward a proposal of his own.
Ushpiz was further quoted as saying that Paris is waiting out November’s midterm elections in the US.
However, a spokesman for the French embassy in Tel Aviv rejected the reports, saying, “The embassy does not know what the reporter is talking about.”
The ex-French administration had unveiled a peace initiative and held an international gathering on the subject. That plan called for a two-state solution to the conflict, at the pre-1967 lines, with East Jerusalem (al-Quds) as the Palestinian capital.