White House to Hold Talks on Gaza Crises With Officials From Israel, Arab World, Europe

Jared Kushner to represent U.S. in 'brainstorming session' on Strip's humanitarian, economic and security crises ■ Palestinian Authority will boycott the event

Palestinians warm themselves by a fire inside their house on a rainy day in Al-Shati refugee camp in Gaza City, January 17, 2018.
\ MOHAMMED SALEM/ REUTERS

WASHINGTON – The White House will convene officials from the United States, Israel, and European and Arab countries Tuesday to discuss the humanitarian, economic and security crises in the Gaza Strip

A statement released Monday by the Trump administration described the discussion as a "brainstorming session" and said the United States will be represented by Jared Kushner, U.S. President Donald Trump's son-in-law and senior adviser, and by officials from the National Security Council.

>> Gaza's humanitarian crisis is man-made. And sick toddlers like Mohammed are paying the price | Opinion >>

The Palestinian Authority said it will boycott the event. 

A White House official said Kushner and the NSC staff "will present specific proposals for consideration to help the people of Gaza." Israel will be represented at the event by Israel Defense Forces Maj. Gen. Yoav Mordechai, the coordinator for government activities in the Territories.

White House senior advisers Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner listen as U.S. President Donald Trump holds a cabinet meeting at the White House, Washington, March 8, 2018.
\ KEVIN LAMARQUE/ REUTERS

Mordechai is the most senior IDF officer in charge of administrative and civil issues regarding Israel's relations with the Palestinians.

Jason Greenblatt, Trump's special envoy for Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations, said that "solving the situation in Gaza is vital for humanitarian reasons, important for the security of Egypt and Israel, and is a necessary step toward reaching a comprehensive peace agreement between Israelis and Palestinians, including Palestinians in both Gaza and the West Bank." 

Greenblatt added that "we are pleased with the committed list of attendees, which includes many of the relevant parties, and anticipate a robust dialogue. The challenge will be determining which ideas can be realistically implemented in light of the fact that the Palestinians of Gaza continue to suffer under the authoritarian rule of Hamas."