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US international negotiations envoy Greenblatt arrives in Israel ahead of Pence visit

President Donald Trump’s international negotiations representative, Jason Greenblatt, is arriving in Israel on Wednesday for meetings with representatives of the Middle East Quartet.

President Donald Trump’s international negotiations representative and special envoy to the Middle East Jason Greenblatt (left) in January 2018 with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Credit: Twitter.
President Donald Trump’s international negotiations representative and special envoy to the Middle East Jason Greenblatt (left) in January 2018 with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Credit: Twitter.

President Donald Trump’s international negotiations representative, Jason Greenblatt, is arriving in Israel on Wednesday for meetings with representatives of the European Union, Russia and the United Nations, who together with the U.S. form the Middle East Quartet, a self-appointed group of international entities striving to advance an Israeli-Palestinian peace deal.

The visit comes amid enhanced U.S. support for Israeli political positions on Jerusalem, settlement construction and questioning the necessity for the rapid implementation of a two-state solution.

There is also growing tension between the U.S. and the Palestinian Authority, following Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and the cutting of $65 million in American funding to UNRWA, the United Nations agency dedicated to Palestinian refugees.

Greenblatt is not expected to meet with Palestinian officials, who have announced their intentions to boycott any efforts initiated by the U.S. since Trump’s Jerusalem announcement. He is expected to stay in Israel through Vice President Mike Pence’s visit to the Jewish state, scheduled for Jan. 22-23.

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