Israel Hayom newspaper claims to have obtained a draft of the American “deal of the century’s” propositions to resolve the conflict between Israel and the Palestinian Authority that has allegedly been circulating around the Israeli Foreign Ministry. The document, leaked to the newspaper by an anonymous source, states that the agreement will be signed by three parties — Israel, the Palestinian Liberation Organisation (PLO) and the Hamas movement.
New State and Shared Capital
According to newspaper, the deal will suggest the creation of a Palestinian state on the lands of the West Bank and Gaza Strip that will be called “New Palestine”. The document doesn’t specify the political structure of a new state, but indicates that democratic elections will be held within a year after its creation to form a government, with each Palestinian receiving the right to cast a vote.
At the same time, Israeli settlements will remain under Tel Aviv’s control with addition of several other settlements. Israel Hayom didn’t specify the settlements that will be added.
Both Israel and New Palestine will use Jerusalem as their capital, the newspaper indicated, citing the plan. However, the city will not be divided, but instead “shared” by the both states. Jerusalem will still be controlled by the Israeli Jerusalem Municipality, but New Palestine will handle education, paying municipal taxes in return, the purported US deal said. The status quo in handling the holy sites in the city will remain in its current state.
Jerusalem’s Arab population will reportedly become full-fledged citizens of New Palestine, as opposed to the existing system of permanent residency documents, which can become invalidated if a person leaves the city for a lengthy period of time. What is more, Israeli citizens won’t be eligible to buy the homes of Palestinians and vice versa, the newspaper added.
The Fate of the Gaza Strip
According to the alleged deal, the Gaza Strip’s borders with Israel and Egypt will be open for the flow of goods and citizens. What is more, a 30-metre-high “bridge” connecting the Gaza Strip and the West Bank will be built. Half of the bridge’s construction will reportedly funded by China, while the other half will be equally funded by South Korea, Australia, Canada, the US, and EU.
Israel Hayom indicated, citing the document, that Egypt will lease New Palestine’s lands near Gaza Strip within five years of the state’s creation. The last is suggested to serve as a base for the construction of an airport, factories, as well as serve for commercial and agricultural activities. At the same time, the alleged deal says Palestinians won’t be able to build houses on the leased land.
No Palestinian Military
The alleged American deal suggests that New Palestine will not have any army with police being the only force, armed with light weaponry. The document suggests that New Palestine and Israel will ink a defence agreement with the latter ensuring protection of the former from external aggression and will be paid in return.
At the same time, the alleged deal will demand all Hamas personnel to give up their weapons. Both Hamas and Israel will release their prisoners one year after the elections in New Palestine, the newspaper indicated, citing the document. Hamas members will continue to receive salaries from supporting states until their structure is replaced with a newly formed government, according to the alleged plan.
The US deal will reportedly suggest dividing the planned $30 billion investments needed for national projects in New Palestine for the first five years between the US, the EU and Gulf States with the latter paying 70% of it, as they will allegedly be the main beneficiaries from the deal.
What is notable, the allegedly leaked document indicates that the US will be ready to cancel all of its funding to the party, which violates the signed deal, be it Hamas or even Israel.
An anonymous senior White House official has refused to confirm the authenticity of Israel Hayom’s document, calling it “speculative” and “inaccurate”. The so-called “deal of the century”, announced by Trump, has been in the works for some time, but few details have made it into the media, with Hayom’s publication being the most detailed so far.
The newspaper indicates that many of the points in the document resonate with statements by Trump’s Middle East advisor Jared Kushner, while at the same time it contradicts some of the previous leaks, which also haven’t been confirmed by US officials.
The “deal of the century” is supposed to become a solution to the conflict between Palestinians and Israelis, which began with the creation of the Jewish state in 1948. This conflict has led to several full-scale wars between Israel and its Arab neighbours. Although no wars against Israel are being waged right now, the Jewish state regularly reports being attacked by Hamas missiles coming from the territory of the Gaza Strip.