Op-Ed via Al Jazeera English

The myth of a ‘Palestinian economy’

Though it is rumoured that US President Donald Trump may withdraw from Israeli-Palestinian peace talks after White House Senior Adviser Jared Kushner's fruitless meetings in Jerusalem and Ramallah, certain policies touted by Trump are likely to continue regardless. For instance, Trump recently declared that he welcomed measures to "unlock the Palestinian economy".

These measures, approved by Israel, include facilitating the travel of Palestinians between Jordan and the West Bank; zoning Israeli-occupied land in the West Bank for Palestinian residential, agricultural, and industrial use; developing two industrial zones; and expanding hours of operation at checkpoints between the West Bank and Israel to ease movement for Palestinians.

In the meantime, Israel continues to place the Gaza Strip in an economic stranglehold. It is currently suffering from a debilitating electricity crisis.

Such economic measures, at least in regard to the West Bank, are based on the assumption that a lack of Palestinian prosperity is the main cause of the conflict.The claim goes that economic success and joint economic projects between Israelis and Palestinians will improve the lives of Palestinians and pave the way for peace.

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