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Israelis, Palestinians try to salvage talks
Published Monday 07/04/2014 (updated) 09/04/2014 11:01
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US Secretary of State John Kerry (R) meets with Israeli Prime
Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem on March 31, 2014
(POOL/AFP/File Jacquelyn Martin)
JERUSALEM (AFP) -- Israeli and Palestinian negotiators were to meet again on Monday in a fresh effort to salvage the teetering, US-brokered peace process, US and Palestinian officials said.

"Israeli and Palestinian negotiators met last night to discuss ways to overcome the crisis in the talks," a US official said.

"The meeting was serious and constructive, and both sides requested that the United States convene another meeting today (Monday) to continue the effort."

A Palestinian official confirmed to AFP that a meeting was scheduled for later Monday, but neither side gave a time or location.

Accompanied by US envoy Martin Indyk, the two sides met on Sunday evening, but Palestinian sources told AFP that the session ended without any breakthrough and an Israeli official was quoted by local media as saying the process was on the edge of collapse.

Israel's parliament was also meeting in special session on Monday during its spring recess, for a debate on the peace negotiations called by opposition MPs critical of the government's handling of the talks.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday threatened to retaliate if the PLO proceeds with applications to sign up to 15 international treaties.

"These will only make a peace agreement more distant," he said of the applications the PLO made on Tuesday.

"Any unilateral moves they take will be answered by unilateral moves at our end."

Palestinians say Israel had already reneged on its own undertakings by failing to release a fourth and final batch of prisoners a week ago, and that the treaty move was their response.

"They refused to free the prisoners and that's why there's no progress," said a Palestinian source.

US Secretary of State John Kerry, the driving force behind the peace push, warned on Friday that there were "limits" to the time and energy Washington could devote to the talks process, as his appeals to both sides to step back from the brink fell on deaf ears.

President Mahmoud Abbas rejected Kerry's plea to withdraw the treaty applications, and Netanyahu ignored US appeals to refrain from tit-for-tat moves, asking for a range of retaliatory options.
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1 ) You should be very happy / and RUN TO THE UN
07/04/2014 11:42
THE ROAD TO STATEHOOD IS OPEN!!!!!

2 ) Esther Levy / USA
07/04/2014 14:43
I hope Mr Kerry gets this sorted & that finally statehood will come to Palestine. I also hope Israel, Palestine & their neighbours can finally live in peace, after such a long at war. I hope!!

3 ) @ Ester-2 / USA too
07/04/2014 15:15
I share your hopes for peace/statehood for Israel/Palestine, but realistically
Neither you/I, Jews/Muslims, Nor Any other realistic person should expect it.

4 ) Brian Cohen / Israel
07/04/2014 20:33
I'm a settler who hopes they are successful. Mel and Colin and Julie and Maureen and Ian and Gabi and Mark are settlers who hope they fail, because from their hundreds of comments it appears that they do not want two states for two peoples. They are, however, very happy to stay in their own conquered colonies and preach to us from their settlements.

5 ) Tibi / Tubas
08/04/2014 04:55
There was never anything more than talking is better than shooting, and there Neither Was, Is, Nor Ever Will Be Anything To "Salvage".

6 ) @ Brian-4 / USA
08/04/2014 14:50
I doubt they are capable of seeing the truth of your last comment, where
- Arabs are "happy to stay in their own (Saladin's era) conquered colonies, and preach to Jews from these settlements" (Hebron, Bethlehem, Jericho, Ramallah, Nablus/Schem, Tulkarm, etc.), and
- after 65 years (with another 65 & 650 likely, even if they discount the Jewish biblical presence) Jews are just as indigenous to the land now, and they will be increasingly indigenous as time goes on !!

7 ) Outlier / USA
08/04/2014 20:45
Talk now or talk later, but the Palestinians have no choice but to talk with Israel if they want a state. The only other possible path is Israel unilaterally declaring a Palestinian state complete with borders (which Israel will set, of course) and leaving the Palestinians to either complete the process of statehood or deteriorate into civil war.

8 ) Rami / Palestine.
09/04/2014 09:32
#4 Your existence as a settler is a violation of international laws. Mel, Colin Julie, and the others are not settlers. They are citizens of a country living within the borders of that country where as you are living, illegally no less, in someone else's country against that county's will. The only reason you hope they succeed is so that Israel can annex and retro-actively legalize your settlement so that your sins as a criminal squatter can be erased but we all know the truth about who you are.
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