Jun 15, 2018

Scoop: U.K. organizing international meeting to discuss Trump's Mideast peace plan

Boris Johnson meets with Mike Pompeo in Washington. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Awaiting the White House Middle East peace plan, the U.K is organizing a meeting of Foreign Ministers from the main European powers and leading Arab states with President Trump's peace team, Jared Kushner and Jason Greenblatt.

Between the lines: Western diplomats briefed on the British move told me the aim of the meeting will be to present parameters the European and Arab countries expect to see in the Trump administration peace plan in order for them to support it. The main concern in European capitals is that the peace plan will be biased in favor of Israel.

Western diplomats and Israeli officials tell me that a few weeks ago, British foreign secretary Boris Johnson met Jared Kushner in Washington and pitched him the idea for the meeting.

  • Johnson told Kushner he wants the U.S. peace plan to succeed and therefore it is important it include input from the European powers ,who have been invested in the peace process for three decades.
  • Kushner's response was positive. He told Johnson he wants to get input and recommendations from the Europeans. According to a source briefed on the meeting, Kushner stressed to Johnson that at the end of the day it will be a U.S. peace plan and its final parameters will be determined by Trump.
  • In the last few weeks, Johnson spoke about his initiative with the foreign ministers of France, Germany, Egypt, Jordan and Saudi Arabia. A western diplomat briefed on those conversations said Johnson wants to draft a set of principles the Europeans will present to the White House, including "red lines" on which their support depends.

Western diplomats said the meeting is expected to take place in early July but it is still unclear whether it will be in Washington or Europe. It is also unclear whether the Arab foreign ministers will join the meeting.

  • Kushner and Greenblatt are going to travel next week to the region for talks in Jerusalem, Cairo, Riyadh, Doha and Amman about the U.S. peace plan and about the crisis in Gaza.
  • A main part of their talks in Arab capitals will focus on trying to encourage Arab leaders to support the plan. King Abdullah of Jordan is expected to arrive soon to Washington and he will meet President Trump to discuss, among other issues, the administration's peace plan.

Go deeper

Updated 59 mins ago - Health

World coronavirus updates

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Axios Visuals

The number of deaths from the novel coronavirus surpassed 400,000 worldwide on Sunday morning, per Johns Hopkins.

By the numbers: Almost 6.9 million people have tested positive for COVID-19 globally and more than 3 million have recovered from the virus. The U.S. has reported the most cases in the world with over 1.9 million.

George Floyd updates

Protesters gather north of Lafayette Square near the White House during a demonstration against racism and police brutality, in Washington, D.C. on Saturday evening. Photo: Jose Luis Magana/AFP via Getty Images

Tens of thousands of demonstrators have been rallying in cities across the U.S. and around the world to protest the killing of George Floyd. Huge crowds assembled in Washington, D.C., Philadelphia and Chicago for full-day events on Saturday.

Why it matters: Twelve days of nationwide protest in the U.S. has built pressure for states to make changes on what kind of force law enforcement can use on civilians and prompted officials to review police conduct. A memorial service was held for Floyd in Raeford, North Carolina, near where he was born. Gov. Roy Cooper ordered all flags to fly at half-staff to honor him until sunset.

Updated 3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 3 a.m. ET: 6,898,613 — Total deaths: 399,832 — Total recoveries — 3,087,714Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 3 a.m. ET: 1,920,061 — Total deaths: 109,802 — Total recoveries: 500,849 — Total tested: 19,778,873Map.
  3. Public health: Why the pandemic is hitting minorities harder — Coronavirus curve rises in FloridaHow racism threatens the response to the pandemic Some people are drinking and inhaling cleaning products in attempt to fight the virus.
  4. Tech: The pandemic is accelerating next-generation disease diagnostics — Robotics looks to copy software-as-a-service model.
  5. Business: Budgets busted by coronavirus make it harder for cities to address inequality Sports, film production in California to resume June 12 after 3-month hiatus.
  6. Education: Students and teachers flunked remote learning.