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Trump Middle East peace plan is coming after Ramadan, Jared Kushner says

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Senior White House advisor Jared Kushner said Tuesday that the Trump administration will put forward its long-awaited plan for peace in the Middle East after the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan in early June.

Kushner, who is also the son-in-law of President Donald Trump, provided few details about the plan to reconcile the disputes between Israelis and Palestinians. But he assured that the proposal itself is “very detailed” and will hopefully represent a “comprehensive vision” for peace.

“We were getting ready at the end of last year” to unveil the plan, but that rollout was interrupted by Israeli election, Kushner said during an interview at the TIME 100 Summit in New York City on Tuesday morning.

“Prime Minister Netanyahu had a great victory and he’s in the middle of forming his coalition, and once that’s done we’ll probably be in the middle of Ramadan, so we’ll wait until after Ramadan and then we’ll put our plan out,” Kushner said.

Asked whether the plan would call for a two-state solution between Israel and Palestine, Kushner declined to say, but added that “we are going to lay that out very clearly” in the report.

Kushner also said he would be sending an immigration plan to Trump by next week.

The president congratulated his son-in-law in a tweet shortly following the interview.

This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.



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Euro zone consumer confidence falls unexpectedly in April

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Euro zone consumer confidence fell unexpectedly by 0.7 points in April from the March number, figures released on Tuesday showed.

The European Commission said a flash estimate showed euro zone consumer morale decreased to -7.9 this month from -7.2 in March. Economists polled by Reuters had expected a rise to -7.0.

In the European Union (EU) as a whole, consumer sentiment fell by 0.6 points to -7.7.

Both indicators remain above their respective long-term averages of -11.3 for the euro zone and -10.4 for the EU as a whole, the Commission said.

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Trump’s Iran crackdown leaves oil market vulnerable to price spikes

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In the Trump administration’s telling, its decision to cut off Iran’s oil exports in just over a week will have little impact on crude prices. There’s enough supply to meet global demand, officials say, and the administration’s Middle East allies will ride to the rescue if the world does find itself short of fuel.

But outside the Oval Office, the outlook is not so rosy.

Analysts say President Donald Trump‘s hardline approach injects new risks into a fragile market besieged by instability in key oil-producing nations. They say global crude supplies are already getting tight, and Trump’s surprise crackdown will leave the market with little cushion to address future disruptions.

“Oil production is being curtailed at a time when Venezuelan output is rapidly falling, conflict in Libya is reviving, and OPEC spare capacity remains tight. This could nudge the oil market dangerously close to a negative supply shock,” Montreal-based macro research firm BCA Research said on Monday.

Oil prices surged to nearly six-month highs after the Trump administration said it will not extend sanctions waivers for several of Iran’s biggest oil customers. The exemptions allowed a handful of countries — including China and India — to import limited shipments of Iranian crude without triggering U.S. sanctions on Iran.

The move aims to shrink Iran’s oil shipments from roughly 1 million barrels per day to zero, though analysts expect some countries to defy the ultimatum. Still, investment banks now expect Iranian shipments to fall by another several hundred thousand barrels per day, further tightening the market.

The Trump administration says Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates have agreed to fill the gap left by the Iranian barrels.

That suggests the OPEC members will soon hike production, reversing output cuts they implemented in January. OPEC and its oil market allies, including Russia, have been keeping about 1.2 million bpd off the market following a collapse in oil prices last year.

Saudi Arabia is already pumping about 500,000 bpd below its quota, giving the kingdom leeway to put more barrels on the market as shipments from Iran sink.

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