A peace deal between Israel and the Palestinians would be in Israel’s interests, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump said on Sunday.
In an interview with George Stephanopoulos on ABC’s “This Week” program, Trump previewed his speech at AIPAC’s annual policy conference at the Verizon Center in Washington, D.C., on Monday. “I think making a deal would be in Israel’s interests,” he said. “I’ll tell you what, I don’t know one Jewish person that doesn’t want to have a deal, a good deal, a proper deal, but a really good deal.”
“And I don’t know any Jewish people that don’t want to make it. They’d all love to see a deal made,” Trump added.
Asked to define what a possible peace settlement would look like, Trump said he would likely go into more details as he addresses the crowd of 18,000 pro-Israelis. “You’re going to hear what I’m going to say at the speech and I’ll save it for that,” he told Stephanopoulos. “There is nobody more pro-Israel than I am. But you’ll hear what I say at the speech and we’ll see what happens.”
“Define a good deal. Will Israel have to give up some land?” Stephanopoulos pressed.
“I’ll be defining it tomorrow. I’m not going to define it now,” Trump responded before retracing it. “I’m not going to define it tomorrow. But we would like to see, and everybody would like to see a real deal be made, not a deal that’s going to be broken, a real deal being made, something that can be lasting.”
Trump’s anticipated speech has roiled AIPAC over the past week, with several Jewish groups threatening to protest his speech or conduct a walk out.
Trump “looks forward to speaking to a group whom he has tremendous respect for,” Trump’s campaign spokeswoman Hope Hicks said in a statement to the NY Times. “Mr. Trump has said, as president, there will be no one stronger on Israeli-American relations than him, and his consistent support and advocacy for Israel over many years is proof of this. Additionally, Mr. Trump is the only candidate to speak with clarity about the deadly threat of radical Islam. ISIS and other Islamic terror groups cannot be defeated if we are politically correct.”
AIPAC had extended invitations to all of the current presidential candidates All, but Bernie Sanders accepted the invitation. “Our Policy Conference is also likely to be one of the few venues that these candidates will have to speak to a bipartisan audience between now and Election Day,” AIPAC said in a statement. “We are delighted for AIPAC to serve as the venue for presidential candidates to share their perspectives, and we look forward to welcoming them.”