PLO official: US administration is 'working against us'

By Laith al-Junidi

AMMAN (AA) – The U.S. administration is “targeting” the Palestinians, Saeb Erekat, secretary-general of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO)’s Executive Committee, said Wednesday.

"U.S. President Donald Trump is targeting the Palestinians, accusing them of ‘making problems’ because we rejected his decision on Jerusalem," Erekat said during a speech he delivered at the University of Jordan in Amman.

Last year, Trump sparked world outcry after announcing plans to move Washington’s Israel embassy to Jerusalem and recognize the city as Israel’s capital, both of which he did earlier this year.

"The U.S. president told us he wouldn’t make any decision on Jerusalem, but what’s happening only confirms that he’s working against us," Erekat said.

He added: "The whole world calls Jerusalem a ‘red line’. What is the [Trump] administration basing its decisions on?"

Since Trump’s controversial Jerusalem move, the Palestinian leadership in Ramallah has rejected any mediating role by the U.S. in the Middle East peace process.

Jerusalem remains at the heart of the perennial Mideast conflict, with Palestinians hoping that East Jerusalem — occupied by Israel since 1967 — might eventually serve as the capital of an independent Palestinian state.