Resolving the Israeli-Palestinian Authority conflict would be “the ultimate deal,” US President-elect Donald Trump told Wall Street Journal on Friday, adding that, as a master dealmaker, he relishes the challenge.
“I’d like to do…the deal that can’t be made. And do it for humanity’s sake,” the real estate tycoon-turned-world-leader, who swept to victory in Tuesday’s presidential election in a seismic shakeup of the American political order, told the publication.
Trump was quoted dubbing the conflict “the war that never ends.”
Earlier on Friday Trump vowed to work for a “just, lasting peace” between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, in his first public message on the issue since his victory.
“I believe that my administration can play a significant role in helping the parties to achieve a just, lasting peace,” Trump said in a message published by the Israel Hayom newspaper.
He also said that any peace deal “must be negotiated between the parties themselves, and not imposed on them by others”.
France is currently pushing for an international conference to revitalize the moribund peace process, but Israel has said it will not take part maintaining that any peace talks should be bilateral between the two sides.
Russia has also offered to host direct talks between the two sides that have so far yet to take place.
Trump adviser Walid Phares told BBC radio that Trump “is ready and he will immediately move to try and solve the problem between Palestinian and Israelis.”
Trump, Phares said, believes that “as the author of ‘The Art of the Deal,’ it’s not going to be impossible for him to broker a deal between the Israelis and Palestinians.”
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and US President Barack Obama have had frosty relations for much of the past eight years, but initial indications are that Trump’s victory could see a warming of personal relations.
Netanyahu was among the first leaders Trump spoke to after his election victory, and the president-elect’s message called Israel a “beacon of hope”.
“Israel and America share so many of the same values, such as freedom of speech, freedom of worship and the importance of creating opportunities for all citizens to pursue their dreams,” Trump’s Israel Hayom message said.
“Israel is the one true democracy and defender of human rights in the Middle East and a beacon of hope to countless people,” Trump said.