Trump threatens to cut off U.S. aid to Palestine

Palestinian leader Mahmud Abbas addresses the Palestinian leadership at the opening of a two-day conference in the West Bank city of Ramallah to discuss the future of the Palestinian Authority

Palestinian leader Mahmud Abbas addresses the Palestinian leadership at the opening of a two-day conference in the West Bank city of Ramallah to discuss the future of the Palestinian Authority

Nabil Abu Rudeineh, spokesman for President Mahmoud Abbas, told Palestine's WAFA news agency that 'Jerusalem and its holy places were not for sale'.

The Palestinians have long demanded East Jerusalem for the capital of their future state. The State Department backtracked the following week and said it could remain open as long as its activities only had to do with resuming the peace process. "We are not against going back to negotiations, but (these should be) based on worldwide laws and resolutions that have recognised an independent Palestinian state with East Jerusalem as its capital", Mr Abu Rudeina said.

In a pair of tweets, Trump said the Palestinians show "no appreciation or respect" to the United States for aid money given to Palestinian territories.

"We will not be blackmailed", senior Palestinian official Hanan Ashrawi said in a statement Wednesday after Trump's tweet.

U.S. president Donald Trump weighed in Tuesday on the stalled Middle East peace process, saying that the Palestinian Authority was taking "hundreds of millions of dollars" in assistance from the usa while showing no "appreciation or respect".

"We are trying to promote the peace process, but if that will not happen, the president will not continue to fund it", she said.

Trump angered many allies and Arab states when he announced in December that the U.S. would consider Jerusalem the capital of Israel and move its embassy there.

As one of the authority's largest doners, Trump could inflict "great pain" on the Palestinians, says The Washington Post.

"I think the president has basically said that he doesn't want to give any additional funding until the Palestinians are agreeing to come back to the negotiation table", Haley said.

On Tuesday, President Donald Trump threatened to end monetary aid to Palestinians if they are "no longer willing to talk peace".

Relations between his administration and the Palestinian Authority have deteriorated since Trump decided last month to recognise Jerusalem as Israel's capital.

Israel seized control of the eastern part of the city in the 1967 Six-Day War and annexed East Jerusalem in 1980, a move that has never been recognised by the global community. "We're not giving the aid", Haley added. "As of now, they're not coming to the table, but they ask for aid".

The response comes after a few weeks of constant complaints by the Palestinian leadership that Trump's administration is not committed to achieving a peace deal, and is simply working to support Israel's positions.