US backtracks on decision to close Palestinian office in DC

Palestinian flag by MGN.
By  | 

WASHINGTON (AP) - The Trump administration is backtracking on its decision to order the Palestinians' office in Washington to close.

Last week, U.S. officials said the Palestine Liberation Organization mission had to close because the Palestinians had violated a provision in U.S. law. The provision says the office can't stay open if the Palestinians try to get the International Criminal Court to prosecute Israelis.

But the State Department now says the office can stay open, with restrictions. The United States has told the Palestinians to limit the office's activities to "to those related to achieving a lasting, comprehensive peace between the Israelis and Palestinians."

The restrictions can be lifted after 90 days if the U.S. and the Palestinians engage in serious peace talks. The State Department says it's optimistic that will happen.

(Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)