Gregory Aftandilian, Lecturer at the Frederick S. Pardee School of Global Studies at Boston University, published a recent Op-Ed examining on United States President Donald Trump’s meetings with Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly meeting.
Aftandilian’s Op-Ed, entitled “Trump Presses Netanyahu and Abbas at UN Meetings but Peace Settlement Remains Elusive,” was published in The Arab Weekly on September 24, 2017.
From the text of the Op-Ed:
US President Donald Trump used the occasion of the UN General Assembly to meet separately with Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas about moving the peace process forward but the latter was more enthusiastic about such discussions than the former.
Trump did not address the Israeli-Palestinian issue in his formal General Assembly speech (which he used primarily to bash North Korea and Iran) but took advantage of sideline opportunities in New York for talks with the Israeli and Palestinian leaders in the hope of restarting the moribund Israeli- Palestinian peace process.
Even before his meeting with Netanyahu, Trump took to Twitter to say: “Peace in the Middle East would be a truly great legacy for ALL people.” By capitalising the word “all” Trump meant the Israelis, the Palestinians and the other Arab peoples of the region.
Aftandilian spent over 21 years in government service, most recently on Capitol Hill where he was foreign policy adviser to Congressman Chris Van Hollen (2007-2008), professional staff member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and foreign policy adviser to Senator Paul Sarbanes (2000-2004), and foreign policy fellow to the late Senator Edward Kennedy (1999).