Palestinian officials said Wednesday that Jerusalem was “not for sale” after Donald Trump, notoriously active on his Twitter feed, made a statement warning he could end annual aid of more than $300 million to force the warring parties to resume negotiations.
…peace treaty with Israel. We have taken Jerusalem, the toughest part of the negotiation, off the table, but Israel, for that, would have had to pay more. But with the Palestinians no longer willing to talk peace, why should we make any of these massive future payments to them?— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) 2 января 2018 г.
"Jerusalem is the eternal capital of the state of Palestine and it is not for sale for gold or billions," Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas’ spokesman Nabil Abu Rudeina told AFP, implying Trump's controversial recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital.
The spokesman has expressed the stance of the Palestinian side, which underscored Abbas’ point that the United States could no longer be a mediator in the peace settlement.
"We are not against going back to negotiations, but [these should be] based on international laws and resolutions that have recognized an independent Palestinian state with east Jerusalem as its capital," Abu Rudeina said.
According to foreignassistance.gov, the United States sent $291 million to Palestine in 2017 and an additional $251 million in aid was scheduled for 2018.
US President Donald Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel has ignited fierce protests among Palestinians, incited violent clashes between them and Israeli security forces and induced Hamas to launch a new intifada.