Demos in Beirut, Camps in Rejection of 'Deal of the Century'


Palestinian and Lebanese factions on Tuesday organized a number of protests in Beirut and several Palestinian refugee camps in rejection of a U.S.-led peace conference in Bahrain.

“Our stance on the 'deal of the century' is the stance expressed by Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri and Lebanon will not take part in this blatant crime,” AMAL Movement politburo member Hassan Qabalan said at a demo outside the U.N.'s ESCWA headquarters in central Beirut.

“No to selling Palestine's cause for money, no to the policies of temptation, no to the policies of starvation and submission and no to naturalization. Yes to resistance, yes to Palestine and anything other than that would be a meaningless conflict,” Qabalan added.

Lebanese and Palestinian forces took part in the rally.

Elsewhere, dozens of protesters organized a demo at the Ain el-Hilweh camp where they burned the American and Israeli flags.

A mass rally was also held at the al-Bass camp in the southern district of Tyre.

After a wait of two and a half years, the U.S. administration is launching its Middle East peace plan later on Tuesday -- with an economic conference in Bahrain that the Palestinians are boycotting. The Trump administration says it will get to the political issues later.

Led by U.S. President Donald Trump's son-in-law and adviser Jared Kushner, the "Peace to Prosperity" framework dangles the prospect of $50 billion of investment in the Palestinian territories and neighboring Arab countries over 10 years.

Listing a slew of projects to develop roads, border crossings, power generation and tourism, the framework sets an optimistic goal of creating one million Palestinian jobs.

But the Palestinian Authority and its rival Hamas have both denounced the initiative, saying it amounts to a bid by the unabashedly pro-Israel Trump to buy them off in return for not enjoying their own state.

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