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More than 100 House Dems reject Trump peace plan in open letter

More than 100 House Democrats on Friday signed a letter to President TrumpDonald John TrumpBiden holds massive cash advantage over Trump ahead of Election Day Tax records show Trump maintains a Chinese bank account: NYT Trump plays video of Biden, Harris talking about fracking at Pennsylvania rally MORE rejecting his Middle East peace plan, saying it would “hurt Israelis and Palestinians alike, pushing them toward further conflict.”

The open letter, led by Democratic Reps. Alan LowenthalAlan Stuart LowenthalOVERNIGHT ENERGY: Democrats push expansion of offshore wind, block offshore drilling with ocean energy bill | Poll: Two-thirds of voters support Biden climate plan | Biden plan lags Green New Deal in fighting emissions from homes Democrats push expansion of offshore wind, block offshore drilling with ocean energy bill Act now to protect our nation's birds MORE (Calif.) and Andy LevinAndrew (Andy) LevinInslee calls Biden climate plan 'perfect for the moment' OVERNIGHT ENERGY: 20 states sue over Trump rule limiting states from blocking pipeline projects | House Democrats add 'forever chemicals' provisions to defense bill after spiking big amendment | Lawmakers seek extension for tribes to spend stimulus money House Democrats add some 'forever chemicals' provisions to defense bill after spiking major amendment MORE (Mich.), warned that Trump’s plan “paves the way for a permanent occupation of the West Bank.”

“It does not have our support, and the Israeli government must not take it as license to violate International law by annexing all or portions of the West Bank,” they wrote.

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The House in December passed a bipartisan resolution, H.Res. 326, led by Lowenthal and affirming U.S. support for a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict that is achieved through direct negotiations and without any unilateral annexation of territory.

During the plan’s unveiling ceremony at the White House on Jan. 27, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin NetanyahuBenjamin (Bibi) NetanyahuMORE promised to immediately exercise Israeli control over areas in the West Bank and the Jordan Valley, though he has since retreated on that pledge.

A senior Israeli official later told reporters there were “technical” difficulties over whether the U.S. plan allowed for Israel to move forward on annexation immediately or not.

A vote in the Israeli Knesset on accepting the plan has also stalled as the country heads to an unprecedented third round of elections on March 2.

Democratic lawmakers accuse Trump of “an inappropriate intervention in a foreign election” by releasing the peace plan with Netanyahu last month “against the backdrop” of the Israeli premier coming under formal indictment charges on allegations of corruption.

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“In addition to the highly problematic nature of your proposal, the timing of its release suggests motives unrelated to helping solve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict,” the letter reads.

The Palestinian Authority and the majority of Arab states have rejected the Trump administration’s peace proposal, a nearly 200-page document that purports to outline the parameters for a solution to achieve a Palestinian state.

Critics say the plan calls for a Palestinian state in name only and instead traps noncontiguous Palestinian territory inside an Israeli security barrier, with Israel exercising civil and security control over the West Bank and Jordan Valley, as well as air, land and sea ports.

The Trump administration says that territory identified in the plan for a future Palestinian state will remain “frozen” for a period of four years to allow for a Palestinian response.