[size=30]Reuters Reveals details of contact between "Bin Salman" and "Trump" before announcing the decision on Jerusalem[/size]
Trend Press - Occupied Palestine
Riyadh has been working behind the scenes for weeks to push the Palestinian Authority to support a nascent US peace plan, Palestinian officials said.
Trump broke a decades-old US policy on Wednesday when he announced recognition and ordered the start of the US embassy transfer from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem despite warnings that it would widen the gap between Israel and the Palestinians.
Saudi Arabia's royal court described the move as "unjustified and irresponsible" and "represents a significant decline in efforts to push forward the peace process."
But Arab officials say privately Riyadh appears to be part of a broader US strategy to draw up an Israeli-Palestinian peace plan that is still in its early stages.
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas discussed in detail a major deal to be unveiled by Trump, his brother-in-law and his adviser Jared Kouchner in the first half of 2018, four Palestinian officials said on condition of anonymity.
One official said Prince Mohammed had asked Abbas to show support for the US administration's peace efforts when they met in Riyadh in November.
Another Palestinian official said Prince Mohammad told Abbas: "Be patient and you will hear good news. The peace process will go on. "
US-Saudi relations have improved considerably in the Trump era, partly because of a consensus between leaders of the two countries on the need to confront Iran, Riyadh's foe, more forcefully in the region.
Kouchner, 36, whose father was one of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's acquaintances, also developed strong personal ties with the 32-year-old Saudi crown prince, who is cementing Saudi influence on the international scene and strengthening his grip on power in his country.
The Saudi royal court did not respond to requests for comment. A White House official said Kouchner did not ask the Saudi crown prince to talk to Abbas about the plan.
* Final agreement
Palestinian officials, as well as many Arab officials, fear that by closing the door to Palestinians declaring East Jerusalem the capital of their future state, Trump will join Israel in granting limited autonomy to Palestinians in various parts of the occupied West Bank without the right of return for refugees displaced in the 1948 and 1967 wars.
Palestinian officials said they feared that the proposal conveyed by Prince Mohammed to Abbas, who is said to be from Kouchner, was the same scenario.
According to Abbas, the proposal includes the establishment of a "Palestinian entity" in Gaza and three West Bank administrative areas in Area A and Area B and 10 percent of Area C, which includes Jewish settlements.
The Jewish settlements in the West Bank would remain the same, the Palestinians would not have the right of return, and Israel would remain responsible for the border.
The proposal appears to be slightly different from existing arrangements in the West Bank and extends Palestinian control, but far below their minimum national demands.
The official said the Palestinians had refused to do so, pointing out that the president had explained the situation and his seriousness on the Palestinian issue and that Saudi Arabia understood the matter.
The White House official denied that Kouchner had conveyed these details to Prince Mohammed and said: "They do not accurately reflect any part of the conversation."
Trump sought to ease the impact of his Jerusalem declaration by contacting Abbas on Tuesday and stressed that the Palestinians would benefit from the plan prepared by Kouchner and Middle East envoy Jason Greenblatt.
The Palestinian official said that President Trump said in a telephone call to President Abbas "I have news that you like."
"Abu Mazen asked for details, but Trump did not give him any details."
A Saudi source said he believed that understandings on an Israeli-Palestinian peace would begin to emerge in the coming weeks.
"Do not underestimate Trump's entrepreneurial skills," said the source, speaking on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the issue. He has always described the final agreement. "
"I do not think our government will accept this unless there is something to mitigate that (King Salman and Crown Prince) can offer to the Arab world - that the Palestinians will get their state," he said.