Palestinian leaders have accused the Trump administration of punishing them with one hand and offering to reward them with the other, as protesters turned out in the West Bank and Gaza to demonstrate against a US economic peace plan.
At a US-led conference in Bahrain, US President Donald Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner urged Palestinian leaders boycotting the event to think outside the "traditional box" and consider the $US50 billion ($A72 billion) plan to boost the Palestinian and neighbouring economies.
The event drew fiery criticism both within the Palestinian territories, where demonstrations broke out for a second day on Wednesday, and across the wider region, where many Arabs took aim at officials for taking part.
Palestinian officials said it was Trump who had inflicted further hardship on Palestinians, cutting hundreds of millions in aid to humanitarian organisations across the Israeli-occupied West Bank and Gaza.
"If the US is so concerned about Palestinian wellbeing, then why did they carry out these punitive measures against us?" senior Palestine Liberation Organisation official Hanan Ashrawi said in Ramallah.
"Why did they target Palestinian infrastructure? Why did they stop scholarships to Palestinian students?" she asked.
In August last year, Washington announced an end to all US funding for the UN agency that assists Palestinian refugees. The US was UNRWA's biggest donor by far up to that point, giving it $US364 million in 2017.
And in February, the US Agency for International Development (USAID) ceased all assistance to the Palestinians, to whom it provided $US268 million in 2017.
The US cuts were widely seen as a way of putting pressure on the Palestinian leadership to re-engage with the White House, which it has boycotted since Trump recognised Jerusalem as the capital of Israel in 2017.
"The same team that cut 350 million dollars of aid to refugee camps ... (goes) to Manama to say we have a brilliant plan to bring Palestinians a new chance, a new opportunity," chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat said on Tuesday in Jericho.
"Why would Palestinians say no to such (a) plan?" he added, mockingly.
Neither the Israeli nor Palestinian governments are attending the event at Manama's luxury Four Seasons hotel, where international bureaucrats enjoyed cocktails and delicate pastries, mingling with Arab businessmen sporting gold Rolex watches.
Some Gulf Arab states, like Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, voiced qualified support for Kushner's plan, while Qatar sent top officials but made no public comment. Egypt and Jordan, the only two Arab states with a peace deal with Israel, sent deputy ministers.
Many Arabs slammed their governments for taking part, describing the event as a sell-off of Palestinians' rights without them present.
"The participation of Arab and Islamic countries in this conference of shame in Manama is unfortunate. ..Political courtesy does not justify this participation," Qatar University professor of political sociology Majed al-Ansari said on Twitter.
Several thousand Palestinians demonstrated in Gaza on Wednesday, burning posters of Trump and his close ally, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. "No to the conference of treason, no to the conference of shame," read one banner.
In the Israeli-occupied West Bank, demonstrations against Bahrain were light for a second day. Some Palestinians voiced a sense of exhaustion about peace efforts and promises of cash and prosperity.
"This conference is just like all others from the past, Arab conferences, American conferences. All of them have been at the Palestinians' expense," said Hamdallah Qasem, 72, who lives in Ramallah.
Australian Associated Press