While Trump administration officials have said they expected a "cooling off period" with the Palestinians, Trump's tweets Tuesday signaled the President has grown frustrated with Palestinians' refusal to partake in a US-led peace process in the wake of his Jerusalem decision.
In a pair of tweets, Trump said the Palestinians show "no appreciation or respect" to the United States for aid money given to Palestinian territories. "By recognizing Occupied Jerusalem as Israel's capital Donald Trump has not only violated global law, but he has also singlehandedly destroyed the very foundations of peace and condoned Israel's illegal annexation of the city". "We're going to make sure they come to the table and we want to move forward with the peace process".
"They work with us at times, and they also harbor the terrorists that attack our troops in Afghanistan", UN Ambassador Nikki Haley said to reporters, according to Reuters. Haley's statement indicates that now, as the prospects for a peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinians seem nearly non-existent, the administration is reversing its earlier decision.
In threatening to cut off aid to the Palestinians, he seemed to suggest that the United States had invested that money for future consideration at peace talks.
The White house official added that while the administration won't give taxpayer money to those spreading lies about the USA, "we remain hard at work on our comprehensive peace plan, which will benefit both Israelis and Palestinians and will be unveiled when it is ready".
Chris Gunness, a spokesman for UNRWA, said it had not been informed of any changes to U.S. funding at this time. Occupied by Israel in the 1967 Middle East war, east Jerusalem is sought by Palestinians to be the capital of their future state. The threat of pulling the more than $300 million off the table may be an attempt to get the Palestinians back to the negotiating table.
"If the United States is keen about peace and about its interests it must abide by that", he said.