Israel Policy Forum (IPF) congratulates President Trump on his first official visit to Israel and applauds the sentiments expressed in his speech today in Jerusalem urging both sides to resolve their conflict and make peace within a larger regional framework. As the president noted, a deal can be reached with determination and compromise, and it will rest upon a foundation of security for Israelis – which requires that Palestinian incitement be seriously addressed – and dignity and self-determination for Palestinians.

To that end, we are gratified to see the Israeli security cabinet approve a series of measures designed to improve the Palestinian economy and allow for more extensive Palestinian construction in Area C. These moves comport with the proposals advanced by Commanders for Israel’s Security (CIS) in “Security First,” a set of security, political, and civil-economic measures designed to improve Israeli security immediately and preserve the two-state solution for the future. The policies approved by Israel will empower the Palestinian Authority, at the expense of extremist groups, and will begin to build the trust between the parties that is an essential prerequisite to any successful negotiations. While these are positive first steps, we urge the Israeli government to adopt the full package outlined in “Security First” for the West Bank, Gaza, and East Jerusalem as a way of delivering security to Israelis and a better quality of life to Palestinians, thereby setting the table for an eventual permanent status agreement. This is a unique moment to take advantage of a regional alignment that will integrate Israel into the broader Middle East, should it successfully resolve the Palestinian issue, and all parties should seize the opportunities that arise.