Trump’s peace plan ‘will not pass’, says Hamas

Trump is to hold talks with Netanyahu (left) and Benny Gantz in Washington ahead of the peace plan unveiling. (Reuters pic)

GAZA CITY: Hamas leader Ismail Haniya Sunday warned the Middle East peace plan US President Donald Trump is shortly expected to unveil “will not pass” and could lead to renewed Palestinian violence.

“We firmly declare that the ‘deal of the century’ will not pass. The new plot aimed against Palestine is bound to fail,” and could lead the Palestinians to a “new phase in their struggle” against Israel, Haniya said in a statement.

Shortly after the Palestinian Islamist movement released Haniya’s statement, a rocket was fired from the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip towards Israel, the Israeli army said.

The army said it had carried out air strikes on Hamas targets in Gaza late Saturday, in response to the launching of incendiary devices attached to balloons sent over from the Palestinian enclave.

Hamas did not claim responsibility for Sunday’s rocket attack but warned it was “time … to restore the rights of Palestinians with a new phase of fighting against Israeli occupation”.

Hamas also called for talks in Cairo with other Palestinian factions, including the Fatah movement led by president Mahmud Abbas, in order to form a common response to Trump’s plan.

The US president is due to unveil his peace plan in the coming hours in Washington, where he is to hold talks with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his political rival Benny Gantz.

The Palestinian leadership was not invited to the US talks and has rejected Trump’s initiative amid tensions over his recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s undivided capital.