White House adviser Jared Kushner’s long-scheduled trip to Israel to support an upcoming peace conference could be derailed by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s failure to form a government coalition, Haaretz reports.
Israel’s Knesset voted Wednesday to dissolve and hold new elections only seven weeks after the last one, after Netanyahu could not reach an agreement with the conservative Avigdor Lieberman’s party and the ultra-Orthodox party United Torah Judaism.
Kushner, who is leading President Donald Trump’s peace team, was scheduled to release the details of the economic part of the plan in June, but the political turmoil in Israel means the planned conference in Bahrain is far from a top priority.
“I think the Trump peace plan is on ice indefinitely now,” Dan Shapiro, former U.S. ambassador to Israel in former President Barack Obama’s administration, told The Washington Post. “They already understood that they couldn’t roll out a peace plan during an Israeli election or government formation, so now the same logic is going to apply.
“Anything in the plan that has the slightest hint of a concession or a hard ask to Israel will be political dynamite during a campaign.”
He added the Bahrain workshop is “basically a ghost economic summit. There will be some ghost economic pledges in support of a phantom peace plan. It was already suffering from a significant lack of relevance and impact. Now it’s going to be even more so in light of the election year.”
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