JERUSALEM — The United States wants Israel to grant the
Palestinians joint control over the border with Jordan.
Officials said the administration of President Barack Obama has
submitted a multi-stage security plan that would give the Palestinians
control over the entire West Bank. They said some areas, particularly the
border with Jordan would be administered with the Israel Army.
“The Americans are proposing joint control over the crossing points [into Jordan],” Israeli Deputy Defense Minister Danny Danon said.
The plan was formally relayed to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Dec. 5 during the visit of U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry. Kerry demanded an immediate discussion of the plan, authored by U.S. security coordinator Gen. John Allen.
“President Obama has designated him [Allen] to play a very special role in assessing the potential threats to Israel, to the region and ensuring that the security arrangements that we might contemplate in the context of this process, will provide for greater security for Israel,” Kerry said.
Officials said the U.S. plan proposes foreign monitors to replace
Israel’s military presence in the West Bank. They said Allen envisions the use of U.S.-financed Iron Dome batteries to protect Israel from Palestinian rocket attacks.
“From the Israeli point of view, there will not be any Palestinian
presence at the crossing points,” Dannon said. “An Israeli civilian and
military presence in the Jordan Valley is essential.”
Netanyahu, who met Kerry three times in 36 hours, has refrained from
commenting on the Allen plan, drafts of which were shown to Israel over the
last three months. Until recently, the prime minister vowed that Israel
would not abandon the Jordan Valley.
The Allen plan was said to have been drafted with the help of 160
officials from the Defense Department and other U.S. agencies. On Dec. 7,
Obama said the plan concluded that Israel would be secure with a Palestinian
state in the West Bank and a Hamas-ruled state in the Gaza Strip.
“This transition period requires some restraint on the part of the
Palestinians as well,” Obama said. “They don’t get everything they want on day one.”
- Israeli Leader Predicts “Cold Peace” in Mideast (abcnews.go.com)
- After security plan, ‘Kerry to present US blueprint for deal on all core issues’ (timesofisrael.com)
- Obama: Judea and Samaria Must Not be ‘Gaza 2’ (israelnationalnews.com)