Published: Sat, January 06, 2018
Global | By Enrique Rogers

Rebuffing Trump aid threat, Palestinians say Jerusalem 'not for sale'

Rebuffing Trump aid threat, Palestinians say Jerusalem 'not for sale'

At nearly the same time, US President Donald Trump threatened to cut off aid money to the Palestinians, saying they aren't interested in peace.

Donald Trump has threatened to cut Palestinian aid, in an escalation to the conflict between leaders.

UNRWA, which receives around $300 million annually from the USA, for years has been the lifeline to hundreds of thousands of Palestinian refugees living in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. But cutting off aid could also affect Israel, which relies on the Palestinian Authority to help maintain calm in the volatile region, the newspaper adds. "They don't even want to negotiate a long overdue peace treaty with Israel", Trump said on Twitter.

The office of Palestine's President Mahmoud Abbas rejected what the Palestinians called Trump's "blackmail" attempt, saying "Jerusalem is not for sale, neither for gold nor silver".

Trump earlier broke with longstanding US policy by recognizing Jerusalem as Israel's capital and setting in motion the processes of moving the USA embassy there from Tel Aviv.

But I think fellow palestinian propagandist Hanan Ashrawi takes the cake with her response.

Palestinians get haircuts at an UNRWA school in Rafah where they have taken shelter
Palestinians get haircuts at an UNRWA school in Rafah where they have taken shelter

"President Trump has sabotaged our search for peace, freedom and justice".

At a press conference at the UN on Tuesday, US ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley fielded questions about US funding for the UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), the UN agency responsible for funneling aid to so-called Palestinian refugees. The United Nations has long considered Jerusalem's status as a negotiating point in a two-state solution.

Abbas's spokesman said they were not against negotiations, but that talks should be "based on global laws and resolutions that have recognised an independent Palestinian state with east Jerusalem as its capital". "We're trying to move for a peace process but if that doesn't happen the president is not going to continue to fund that situation".

The United States does not pay large amounts of money directly to the Palestinian Authority, the government that rules over parts of the Palestinian West Bank.

When Trump declared Jerusalem to be Israel's capital, he insisted that the move would improve, not hurt, prospects for clinching a peace deal.

Trump's recent decision to declare Jerusalem as Israel's capital has emboldened Israel's leadership to take dramatic measures to safeguard their claims to land in Jerusalem.

A number of people reported hurt in New York City building fire
The 23 civilians - including nine children - and a firefighter were rushed to hospitals after the 7-alarm blaze, Nigro said. There were numerous injuries reported from the morning fire which took over 200 firefighters to control.

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