KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad condemned the US “deal of the century” on Saturday for ignoring the rights of Palestinians.
“It’s a one-sided deal hatched by the US and Israel without consultation with the Palestinians, which has spiked any attempts to bring peace or justice to Palestine,” the 94-year-old premier said at the third conference of the League of Parliamentarians for Al-Quds (LP4Q), which was attended by 500 MPs from all over the world.
“This peace plan acknowledges only the powerful occupier while completely ignoring the rights of the oppressed.”
He said the plan would never result in a contiguous, sovereign Palestinian state, and would “only further the domination of an apartheid-like occupation over millions of Palestinians.”
The US plan envisions a disjointed Palestinian state that turns over key parts of the West Bank to Israel, siding with Israel on key contentious issues including borders and the status of Jerusalem and Jewish settlements.
The Palestinians seek all of the West Bank and East Jerusalem — areas captured by Israel in the 1967 Middle East war — for an independent state.
“Malaysia finds the proposal utterly unacceptable and grossly unjust. It’s truly disappointing that after more than seven decades, only one side of the two-state solution has come into form — that of Israel,” said Mahathir, who urged US President Donald Trump to resign.
Dr. James Dorsey, a senior fellow at Singapore’s S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies, told Arab News that Mahathir “may be more outspoken than others, but is certainly not the only one who doesn’t like the ‘deal of the century’.”
Trump has described the plan as a “win-win” for both parties, but it has been widely condemned by the international community, including the UN and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation. “This is a plan that basically violates international law,” Dorsey said.
Syed Ibrahim Syed Noh, chairman of the organizing committee of LP4Q, told Arab News: “The ‘deal of the century’ isn’t a peace plan but an assault on peace. It’s a one-sided plan that disregards opinions from Palestine.”
He said the best way to address the Palestinian issue is to implement UN resolutions and a two-state solution based on the pre-1967 borders.
Muslim Imran, chairman of the Palestinian Cultural Organization Malaysia, told Arab News that the plan provides neither peace nor prosperity in the Middle East, as it only “caters to right-wing Israeli settlers” rather than seeking to address both sides of the conflict.
“The message that this conference sends to the world is that the international community, represented by legislators and decision-makers, doesn’t approve of Trump’s unfair proposal to settle the Palestinian-Israeli conflict,” he said.