Senior PA official: Kotel should remain under Israeli sovereignty

Senior Palestinian Authority official Jibril Rajoub spoke with Channel 2 News this evening and commented on U.S. President Donald Trump’s visit to the Western Wall. Rajoub said that the Palestinians know that the Western Wall is a holy site for the Jewish people and that it should remain under Israeli sovereignty.
Rajoub Photo Credit: Miriam Alster/FLASH90

Senior Palestinian Authority official Jibril Rajoub discussed the future of Israel and the Palestinians in an exclusive interview with Channel 2 News on Saturday evening. “We’re waiting for President Trump’s initiative and we’re ready,” Rajoub told Channel 2 News’ Rina Matzliach. “Trump is an opportunity for us and for the Israeli side. He comes with clear intentions for the ultimate deal to put an end to the suffering of both the nations.”

Addressing the Israeli people, Rajoub said: “You have a partner on the Palestinian side in order to achieve a historic reconciliation between the nations- two states for two nations- we need to do this today, not tomorrow.

When asked about Trump’s decision to postpone the move of the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem, he said: “I think this is a message to both of the sides: to the Israeli right-wing, [he said] that he is not in their pocket; and to us, [he said] that there’s hope and he is going in that direction in order to get the deal he is aiming for done. Since his inauguration, it has been clear that he understands the conflict and that the solution needs to be political. He told Abu Mazen [Mahmoud Abbas] that he wants to reach a deal, to put an end to the suffering of both the nations. We believe that he is a completely different person than his predecessors.”

In response to the reports of Trump shouting at Abbas during their meeting in Bethlehem, he said: “First of all, this is a lie and false. We do not educate our children this way [to incite to violence]- there’s incitement on our side and [incitement] on your side. I hope that the Israelis understand the situation as it is and as Bibi [Benjamin Netanyahu] is educating them.”

When asked about Trump’s visit to the Western Wall, Rajoub had a rather surprising answer: “We understand that the Kotel that he visited is a holy place for the Jews and that in the end, it will need to be under Jewish sovereignty. We have no dispute over this. It is clear that this is a holy place for the Jews. The Temple Mount is ours, not yours, and I think that you guys will stop talking this way. This has been the status quo since 1967.”



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