US President Donald J. Trump and Jared Kushner meet with Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at the King David Hotel May 22, 2017 in Jerusalem, Israel. (Kobi Gideon/GPO via Getty Images)

US Hints at Releasing Details of Israeli-Palestinian Peace Plan before March

Evidence is mounting that the Trump Administration will release its long-delayed Middle East peace plan prior to Israel’s March 2 national election. In the latest apparent “trial balloon,” US National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien reiterated that President Donald Trump “is looking for a solution on the Israeli-Palestinian front that is durable, is long-lasting, and we’re not timing anything we do based on the domestic politics, either [of] the Palestinians or the Israelis.” The comments come on the backdrop of last week’s visit to Jerusalem by lead US negotiator Avi Berkowitz, which raised media speculation that the peace proposal could be rolled out within weeks. The White House has repeatedly postponed the publication of the political components of the plan, with reports citing as a primary factor political instability in the Jewish state, which by March will have conducted three snap elections in less than a year. However, analysts believe that President Trump may be entering now-or-never territory for jump-starting a negotiating process given that the 2020 US presidential election is quickly approaching. Notably, Berkowitz’s predecessor, Jason Greenblatt, stated in an interview on Monday that there remain “complex issues that the two sides are extraordinarily divided on, and even within the two societies, so I don’t think anybody can sit here and say peace can be achieved.” He nevertheless qualified that “it would be a shame if we didn’t continue to try desperately.”

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