White House Mideast Peace Team on Fundraising Trip

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The Trump administration Mideast peace team’s next visit to the region will be in large part a fundraising trip, aimed at raising money among the Arab Gulf states for Gaza, according to sources cited by Haaretz on Sunday night.

Senior adviser to the president Jared Kushner and Jason Greenblatt, the president’s special envoy, are scheduled this week to meet the leaders of Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and Jordan, and high on the agenda will be obtaining financing to relieve the economic crisis in the Hamas-ruled enclave, which they hope will help pave the way for the unveiling of the White House peace plan.

According to Israeli and Arab sources, Gaza’s electricity shortage will be at the top of Kushner and Greenblatt’s list.

“This is an issue that is urgent, and at the same time, can be dealt with relatively quickly,” said one of the sources on condition of anonymity. “The Americans are counting on the Gulf states to help with the money necessary for solving it.”

The White House would not elaborate, saying they “won’t discuss specifics before the conversations have taken place.”

One of the aid possibilities being discussed is a solar energy project to be built near the Egyptian town of El-Arish in northern Sinai. The White House is said to be looking for somewhere between $500 million and $1 billion to make it happen.

Among long-term projects would be the construction of a port in northern Sinai and the building of a power plant and water desalination plant.