White House staffing up for launch of still secret peace plan with ‘economic focus’

by WorldTribune Staff, August 3, 2018

The team that will bring President Donald Trump’s still-secretive Middle East peace plan to the finish line is being put together, a report said.

Jared Kushner, left, and Jason Greenblatt

The National Security Council (NSC) last week began approaching other agencies seeking volunteers to join the team who will work for Trump’s pointmen on the plan, senior adviser Jared Kushner and special envoy for international negotiations Jason Greenblatt, The Associated Press reported on Aug. 2, citing U.S. officials.

An NSC official said that Kushner and Greenblatt “are expanding their team and the resources available as they finalize the details and rollout strategy of the peace initiative.”

The officials told the AP that Trump’s team will consist of three units: one concentrating on the peace plan’s political and security details, one on its significant economic focus and one on strategic communications.

Timing on the release of the plan remains undecided. The State Department, Pentagon, intelligence agencies and Congress have been asked to detail personnel to the team for six months to a year, according to the officials, who spoke to AP on condition of anonymity.

Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas so far has refused to engage with the U.S. in protest over Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem of Israel’s capital and his relocating the U.S. embassy to the city.

In late June, after a meeting at the White House with King Abdullah II of Jordan, Trump said “A lot of progress has been made in the Middle East, a lot.”

Previous reports said the Trump administration has approached Gulf Arab nations about investing hundreds of millions of dollars in economic projects in Gaza in an attempt to calm the security situation before the White House presents its peace plan.

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