Stories by Marwan Muasher

Expert Voices

Trump's Israeli–Palestinian plan likely to heighten Mideast tensions

A Palestinian man riding a horse and waving a Palestinian flag during clashes between Palestinian protesters and the Israeli forces along the Israeli fence East of Gaza City.
A Palestinian man riding a horse and waving a Palestinian flag during a protest along the Israeli fence East of Gaza City. Photo: Nidal ALwaheidi/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

This year's UN General Assembly session promises to bring the Israeli-Palestinian conflict back to center stage. The Trump administration's recent decisions on Jerusalem and withdrawal of funding for the UN agency that supports Palestinian refugees, together with a possible announcement at the UN of its "deal of the century," indicate that it is attempting to remove key issues for the Palestinians from the negotiating table.

The big picture: The U.S.’ apparent strategy is to decide a priori the fate of Jerusalem and refugees in Israel's favor, and to force the Palestinians to accept an inferior deal. Whether the U.S. unveils the details of its plan during the UNGA session or not, it’s likely to exacerbate tensions in the region.