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Biden’s Administration to Prevent Further Escalation In Israeli-Palestinian Tensions

Biden’s Administration to Prevent Further Escalation In Israeli-Palestinian Tensions

Friday, 22 January, 2021 - 11:15
A banner welcoming the transfer of the US embassy to Jerusalem in May 2018 (Reuters)

Tel Aviv is anticipating the policy of the new US President Joe Biden’s administration towards the Palestinian cause.

Israeli media quoted US sources as saying that the priority set by the new administration regarding Palestine is to focus on preventing damages that may result from decisions taken by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government.

According to the state-owned Kan 11 television news channel, an official in Biden’s administration said the US “will seek to prevent Netanyahu from escalating the situation with the Palestinians and destabilizing the situation on the ground.”

In closed-door discussions, officials said the US administration is currently aware that it will not be able to take major steps on the Palestinian issue, the official noted, affirming that its main target now is to maintain regional calm and avoid shocks.

Meanwhile, Netanyahu released a video message in which he congratulated Biden on his inauguration as the 46th US president.

“Congratulations President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris on your historic inauguration. President Biden, you and I have had a warm personal friendship going back many decades. I look forward to working with you to further strengthen the US-Israel alliance, to continue expanding peace between Israel and the Arab world and to confront common challenges, chief among them the threat posed by Iran.”

The future US moves on the Palestinian cause and the Palestinian-Israeli conflict are not considered an urgent matter for the Israeli government, said Ynet’s senior Israeli defense analyst and veteran military correspondent Ron Ben-Yishai.

“This issue is less influential and doesn’t pose a threat to the interests of the United States and its allies in the region.”

He pointed out that the US demands for the Israeli side would be limited to refraining from taking unilateral steps that would undermine any “possible future Israeli-Palestinian negotiations.”

This includes halting settlement expansion and granting legitimacy to informal settlement outposts, Ben-Yishai explained.

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