US changes course, allows PLO office to remain open

By , on November 25, 2017


Under U.S. law, the president must certify to Congress every 90 days whether Iran is meeting its commitments to the agreement. If the president does not certify compliance, Congress would have 60 days to decide whether to re-impose sanctions that were lifted under the agreement. (PIXABAY Photo)
Instead of closing the mission, American officials say the U.S. is imposing “limitations” that ould be lifted in 90 days. (Pixabay photo)

WASHINGTON — The Trump administration has abruptly shifted course on its decision to close the Washington mission of the Palestine Liberation Organization.

Instead of closing the mission, American officials say the U.S. is imposing “limitations” that could be lifted in 90 days.

Last week, U.S. officials said the PLO office couldn’t stay open because the Palestinians had violated a provision in U.S. law requiring the office to close if the Palestinians try to get the International Criminal Court to prosecute Israelis. That triggered a major rift in U.S.-Palestinian relations even before President Donald Trump’s ambitious effort to broker Mideast peace could get off the ground.

On Friday, State Department spokesman Edgar Vasquez said the U.S. had advised the PLO Office to limit its activities to those related to achieving the long-sought peace.