Challenges facing a Trump peace initiative

What We’re Reading

FMEP in the News

Netanyahu’s Predictable Traps to Sabotage Peace,

“Many observers have been waxing cautiously hopeful that the new U.S. president is serious about achieving a breakthrough on Israel-Palestine peace. Some are even suggesting that Trump’s unpredictability could be an asset,” writes Lara Friedman. “Make no mistake: Trump’s unpredictability is matched by the predictability of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who has spent decades honing various traps to sabotage even the most sincere and resolute peace effort.”

US-Israeli/Palestinian relations

What Will Happen When Israeli Stonewalling Meets President Trump?,

“The incentive structure for progress versus continued bad behavior is stacked all wrong on the Israeli side,” writes Daniel Levy. “Experience tells Israeli policy-makers and public opinion that undermining peace, international norms and laws is treated with impunity while benefits (trade deals, diplomatic upgrades, military aid) accrue to Israel regardless.”

Trump Rules Out Moving Israel Embassy to Jerusalem for Now, Official Says,

President Donald Trump has decided not to immediately move the U.S. embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, a senior White House official said, violating a campaign promise but avoiding a provocation that could drive Palestinians away from peace talks.

US official says Trump undecided on embassy move,

A US official is denying reports that President Donald Trump has decided to indefinitely postpone moving the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem

What Abbas hopes to achieve from Trump's Palestine visit,

Ahead of President Donald Trump’s visit to the West Bank, the Palestinian leadership is satisfied with its choice of strategy, consisting of opening communication channels with the new Trump administration and avoiding tensions on the ground.

Occupation/Human rights

Palestinian killed by Israeli settler in West Bank clash,

A Palestinian was killed by an Israeli settler during a clash near the city of Nablus in the occupied West Bank on Thursday, the Palestinian health ministry and security sources said.

Opinion: Why Israel needs a Palestinian state,

“The never-ending subjugation of Palestinians will erode Israel’s standing abroad and damage its democracy at home…if Mr Abbas’s Palestinian Authority (PA) is weak, then Israel needs to build it up, not undermine it.”

A mole on the face of the occupation,

“Controlling the Palestinians is the choice of the Israeli public – the choice of masters to continue ruling their subjects be means of an army of bureaucrats, undercover agents, judges, planners and, yes, also soldiers,” writes Hagai El-Ad.

Reconstruction of Umm al-Hiran killings disproves car-ramming claims,

An investigative team led by Forensic Architecture and Activestills proves, through a reenactment and visual analyses of footage of the incident, that the deaths of a Bedouin teacher and an Israeli policeman in Umm al-Hiran in January were not the result of a car-ramming attack.

WATCH: Palestinians visit ruins of village destroyed during Nakba,

Descendants of Palestinians who were expelled from the village of Ma’alul during the Nakba visit the site of their former home to celebrate Easter in the church there — one of the few buildings left standing after the Israeli army destroyed the locality.

The two-state solution is the only way to peace in the Middle East,

The “two-state solution on the basis of the 1967 borders, with Jerusalem as the capital of both states” is the only way to achieve lasting peace between Israelis and Palestinians, European Parliament members said in a resolution adopted on Thursday.


Number of exits via Erez during April lowest since Operation Protective Edge,

The low number of exits is irregular and of concern. It points to an escalation of the trend Gisha has been recording for some time, toward the gradual tightening of the closure and further reduction in the already limited options for Palestinian travel in and out of Gaza.

Gaza residents left in the dark amid Palestinian power struggle,

There is already no electricity in the Gaza Strip for up to 20 hours per day.

Palestinian politics

What's behind Palestinian prisoners' hunger strike?,

It’s been a full month of self-imposed starvation for more than 1,300 Palestinian prisoners. How far are the prisoners willing to go?

[Arabic] Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike cease drinking water,

A “large number” of Palestinian prisoners currently on hunger strike in Israeli prisons have begun refusing to drink water, the Palestinian Authority’s head of prisoners affairs, Issa Qaraqe’, said on Thursday.

[Arabic] Armed factions warn of retribution if Palestinian hunger strikers harmed,

Representatives of armed Palestinian factions in Gaza affiliated with Islamic Jihad, Hamas, and Fatah warned in a press conference on Thursday that they would not “stand idly by” if Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike were harmed, and called for a protests in support of the prisoners.

Results of local Palestinian elections,

Independents 65%, Fatah 28%, DFLP 3%.

Israeli politics

In ‘signal to Trump,’ Herzog says Israel must retain Ma’ale Adumim,

Touring settlements, opposition leader says he’s committed to ‘separation’ from Palestinians, but he wouldn’t dismantle large blocs.