US Vice President Pence welcomes end to government shutdown

Jan 28, 2018, 00:29
US Vice President Pence welcomes end to government shutdown

Before the "execution" protesters held up Palestinian flags and various placards, including one with pictures of Trump, Pence and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, all with "X" marks on them.

Despite the close to four-week delay of the Pence visit, Abbas still declined to meet with the U.S. official.

KEITH: So I want to start by saying that over the years, American politicians traveling overseas have limited their discussions of domestic USA politics, or they've tried to keep partisanship to a minimum.

Yet it was unclear after Pence's speech whether Trump still meant to break ground later on a new embassy elsewhere in Jerusalem or to use the retrofitted one permanently. A minority in the United States Senate chose to shut down the government, denying our soldiers benefits and wages that they earned, jeopardizing government services just to advance an issue pertaining to illegal immigration.

"The Schumer shutdown failed", he said, referring to Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer.

Pence responded to the ruckus by saying he was humbled to speak before such a "vibrant democracy", then delved into his prepared remarks about the countries' unbreakable bond. All of that of course is a moot point now. He spoke to the Israeli parliament, the Knesset, today. Israeli government officials give off the impression that they understand precisely what makes Trump tick, and that Trump's views on any subject are directly related and proportionate to the amount of flattery he receives from said subject's champions.

In a speech that could have been written by a modern day Herzl, Pence laid out both the close, everlasting ties between Israel and the United States, as well as the historic mission of the State of Israel.

The Arab Peace Initiative, introduced by Saudi Arabia in 2002, was presented to stress on the world that the Arabs and Muslims want peace through an end to the Israeli occupation of Arab lands, added Al-Maalami. Arab-Israeli legislators were thrown out of the Knesset after heckling the vice president.

Zolot said that the pre-negotiation discussions between the Palestinian and United States leaders went "from strength-to-strength" over three meetings between May and September. And they were quite rapidly escorted out of the room in sort of a rough way.

Before the visit, Pence met with Israeli President Reuven Rivlin and called U.S. President Donald Trump's decision to move the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem a "tangible sign" of U.S. commitment to the Jewish state.

The Palestinians say the U.S.is no longer an acceptable mediator.

He promised to be a "fair arbitrator" in the peace process and vowed to deliver the "ultimate deal", Zolot said.

Palestinian leaders vote on January 15 to call for the suspension of their recognition of Israel, but implementation of such a move remains in the hands of the Palestine Liberation Organisation's executive committee. However, each president in succession has signed waivers delaying the move in hopes that doing so might move peace negotiations between Israel and the PLA forward.

"Well, it is true that the Americans have not announced their plan for Middle East peace yet, but we know that the crux of it is about a "limited Palestinian state on limited parts of the territories seized by Israel in 1967" and we honestly don't think that this would work for the Palestinians - with or without the consent of Abbas or anyone else", said a Middle-East based European diplomat. He further revealed how the Palestinians had been "literally nagging" the U.S. to commence official peace negotiations for months.

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