Mahmoud Abbas spotted in Baltimore

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas was sighted on Wednesday in Baltimore, Maryland. According to a source, Abbas is receiving medical treatment at Johns Hopkins Hospital.

An impressive motorcade of Secret Service vehicles were seen parked outside the Four Seasons Hotel in the Harbor East neighborhood of Baltimore.

Abbas’ Boeing 737 landed at Baltimore–Washington International Airport at 3:00 PM EST after a short flight from White Plains, New York, according to the Flight Radar24 site.  

On January 14th, during a fiery speech in Ramallah, Abbas declared “Damn your money!” to the United States following President Trump’s decision on Jerusalem. “We will not accept for the U.S. to be a mediator, because after what they have done to us — a believer shall not be stung twice in the same place.”

Earlier this week on Tuesday, Abbas addressed the United Nations Security Council at its monthly meeting on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in New York. While expectations were that Abbas would continue his harsh rebuke of the U.S. and resist the Trump administration’s efforts in mediating a peace deal between Israel and the Palestinian, Abbas instead struck a somewhat more moderate tone, presenting a framework for peace negotiations under the supervision of the wider international community.

Abbas’ medical treatment in Baltimore may explain the timing of his speech this week at the UN.

This past December, Haaretz reported that Abbas received an invitation to visit the White House for the second time in a year after the Trump administration was made aware that the Palestinian president was slated to be in the city for a medical procedure.

Separately in November, Jared Kushner and Jason Greenblatt made a point of visiting Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat after he underwent a lung transplant operation at a hospital in Fairfax, Virginia.

Given the recent tension, whether Kushner or Greenblatt will make the short trip up to Baltimore to visit Abbas remains to be seen. According to a White House official there are currently no plans for such a visit. The official added, “but we wish him well.”

Subscribe now to
the Daily Kickoff

The politics and business news you need to stay up to date, delivered each morning in a must-read newsletter.