Bowing to Trump Request, Netanyahu Delays West Bank Housing Authorizations
Saying he has no intention of humiliating the Trump administration on issues relating to building on land conquered in the 1967 war that is also claimed by the Palestinians – “settlements” – Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu bowed to a request from the American president, telling his security cabinet that meetings of the planning committee responsible for those communities will be put off for about two weeks. During the presidential campaign, candidate Trump and his surrogates gave the impression that building in post-1967 areas would be a non-issue in a Trump administration but it has not turned out that way. The request by the president is not surprising given the reported impassioned personal plea by Trump to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas to give the administration a month or more to come up with tangible peace proposals. For his part, although Netanyahu faces strong pressure from his right wing to proceed with building in those areas, it’s not going to happen with Trump’s chief negotiator Jason Greenblatt en route to Israel for continued talks.