President Donald Trump’s Senior Advisor Jared Kushner shed light Tuesday on the Trump administration’s highly-anticipated “Deal of the Century” peace-plan that will be presented to Israelis and Palestinians in the coming weeks.
Kushner, who has been tasked with overseeing the proposal process, said his team is taking a different approach than previous attempts to end the decades-long conflict between Israel and the Palestinians.
“I mean it’s about as tough of a problem set as you can get and so I think we’ve taken I think an unconventional approach,” he said during an interview at the 2019 TIME 100 Summit.
“We’ve studied, you know, all the different past efforts and how they’ve failed and why they’ve failed. And there’s been some tremendous work done by the people who worked on this before us. So, we’ve tried to do it a little bit differently,” he continued.
Kushner said in the past, leaders “start with a process” and then hope that process leads to a resolution. Instead, his team is doing the opposite.
“We started on a proposal and then work on a process to try to get there,” he explained. “We’re not trying to impose our will. I think that the document you’ll see which is a very detailed proposal is something we’ve created by engaging a lot of people from the region and people who have worked on this in the past. I hope that it’s a very comprehensive vision for what can be if people are willing to make some hard decisions.”
Kushner said his plan is an effort to improve the lives of Israelis, Palestinians, and the broader region through business.
“Our focus is really on the bottom up. Which is how do you make the lives of the Palestinian people better? What can you resolve to allow these areas to become more investible? We deal with all the core status issues because you have to do it. But we’ve also wrote up a robust business plan for the whole region,” he said.
Kushner acknowledged that Israel’s biggest concern in the peace process is security, but his proposal calls for compromises on both sides.
“I think that what we do is something that allows for Israel to maintain security but they’ll be tough compromises for both,” he said.
“I’m hopeful that what they’ll do is, ‘Look there are some compromises here, but at the end of the day this is really a framework that can allow us to make our lives materially better.’ And we’ll see if the leadership on both sides has the courage to take the leap to try to go forward.”
The peace plan will be released sometime after the Muslim holy month of Ramadan ends, which is the first week of June.