Palestine says U.S. economic plan “second Balfour Declaration”

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RAMALLAH, June 23 (Xinhua) — The Palestinian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates on Sunday described the U.S.-led economic plan for the Middle East as the “second Balfour Declaration.”

The ministry said in a press statement that “day after day, the reality of the American intentions and attitudes against the Palestinian people and their rights unfolds in what can be called the obnoxious Trump Declaration or the Balfour Declaration II, which denies the existence of the Palestinian people.”

It accused the U.S. administration of attempting to whitewash the occupation of Palestinian territory, saying “this project does not talk about the economy of the Palestinian state and its components, but tries to whitewash the occupation and settlement.”

The White House announced in May that the United States would unveil the first part of its Middle East peace plan at an economic workshop in Manama, capital of Bahrain, from June 25 to 26.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas recently announced that Palestine would not participate in the Manama economic workshop.

The Palestinian Authority (PA) severed its political ties with the United States after President Donald Trump declared Jerusalem the capital of Israel in December 2017 and moved his country’s embassy to the city in May last year.