Palestine resumes contact with US after 3-year gap

Ramallah: The Palestinian Authority has resumed contacts with the US government after a three-year hiatus following former American President Donald Trump’s decision to declare Jerusalem as the capital of Israel leading to the severing of ties, a top official said.

In a statement, Hussein al-Sheikh, the Palestinian Minister of Civil Affairs, said: “Today, I had a telephone conversation with Hadya Amr, a US official, who is in charge of the Palestinian and Israeli affairs in the American State Department.”

He added that the conversation with Amr “was positive, and we discussed the bilateral relationships, the latest developments, and the political situation”.

“At the end of the conversation, we agreed to keep in contact,” al-Sheikh said, adding that it was the first official contact between a Palestinian official and an official from the new US administration since Joe Biden took office on January 20.

On January 26, the Biden administration had announced the restoration of relations with Palestine, a move welcomed by the latter.

Biden’s Middle East policy “will be to support a mutually agreed, two-state solution, in which Israel lives in peace and security, alongside a viable Palestinian state”.

In March 2019, the US Consulate-General in Jerusalem ceased operating as an independent mission and had been revamped as the Palestinian Affairs Unit, which would report to the American Embassy in Jerusalem.

Image courtesy of (law4palestine.org)

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