Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he believes that the Palestinian Authority would return to negotiations with Israel fairly soon. This came in statements published in the US-Israeli newspaper Israel Hayom
“In a closed-door conversation, Netanyahu said that the regional significance of the newly-signed peace deals between Israel, the United Arab Emirates, and Bahrain left the Palestinians no option other than to come back to the table,” Israel Hayom reporter Ariel Kahana wrote.
“However, the prime minister said that talks with the PA would re-launch only after the US presidential election on Nov. 3, and only if US President Donald Trump is re-elected,” he added.
In other news, statements made by US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman to Israel Hayom about Washington considering the unseating of PA President Mahmoud Abbas and replacing him with former Fatah strongman Mohammed Dahlan spurred widespread controversy.
After the rage Friedman’s statements caused, Israel Hayom edited the article to emphasize that the US diplomat’s answer to such speculations was no.
Asked whether the US is considering the possibility of appointing Dahlan, who lives in the UAE, as the next Palestinian leader, Friedman replied: "We're not thinking about it," we have no desire to engineer the Palestinian leadership.
The statement that caused uproar was published on Thursday. Due to the phrasing’s ambiguity, it was understood that the US administration is considering appointing Dahlan as the next Palestinian leader.
PA officials consequentially released vocal statements against such a conspiracy.
As for the impact of the developments on the Palestinians, Friedman said the Palestinian people are not being served properly by their leadership.
"They (the PA) need to join the 21st Century. They are on the wrong side of history at the moment," he said.
"Peace is a once-in-a-generation opportunity," said the ambassador.
After pushing the peace initiative forward and fully capitalizing on it, Friedman said he believes the sovereignty issue can be revisited in a manner that will be less controversial.