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Kerry 'concerned' about Palestinian deaths at Ofer protest
Published Thursday 15/05/2014 (updated) 17/05/2014 12:30
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Israel's chief negotiator with the Palestinians Tzipi Livni addresses the
4th National J Street Conference in Washington on Sept. 28, 2013
(AFP/File Nicholas Kamm)
LONDON (AFP) -- US Secretary of State John Kerry Thursday met with Israel's chief peace negotiator Tzipi Livni in London, just weeks after his relentless bid to broker a treaty with the Palestinians came screeching to a halt.

US officials confirmed that the top American diplomat had held surprise talks with Israeli Justice Minister Livni, as they took advantage of both being in London at the same time for different meetings.

Kerry voiced concern after two Palestinians were shot dead by Israeli forces Thursday during a protest outside the Ofer prison near Ramallah, on the West Bank.

Kerry "again urges both sides to refrain from unhelpful steps," a senior State Department official said in a statement.

"He is concerned about the violent incident that took place today outside the Ofer prison and calls upon both sides to exercise maximum restraint."

Kerry met Livni after holding talks on Wednesday in the British capital with Palestinian leader Mahmud Abbas in the wake of the collapse last month of the peace process.

The State Department official said he and Livni both happened to be in London "and it provided an opportunity for them to catch up since the pause in the negotiations."

Kerry gave Livni the same message as he had stressed to Abbas -- that the fate of the talks lies in the hands of the Israelis and Palestinians.

"While the door remains open to peace, the parties must determine whether they are willing to take the steps necessary to resume negotiations," the US official said.

Kerry had also reiterated to Abbas on Wednesday that any Palestinian government must recognize Israel and commit to non-violence.

British Foreign Secretary William Hague later tweeted to confirm he had also met with Livni for talks on the peace process, urging that the "opportunity for peace must be seized."

Kerry coaxed the Israelis and the Palestinians back to the negotiating table in July 2013 after a three-year hiatus, and both sides agreed to keep talking for nine months.

But the April 29 deadline expired with the peace process in disarray, forcing Kerry and his team to declare a "pause" in the negotiations.

In more violence in the region, Israeli border police shot dead two Palestinians on Thursday during a demonstration in the West Bank marking the 66th anniversary of the Nakba, or "catastrophe" of Israel's creation in 1948 and the expulsion of 750,000 Palestinians it entailed.

The shooting triggered a warning from the Palestinians that they may "seriously consider a halt to security coordination with the Israeli side," Palestinian security spokesman Adnan al-Damiri told AFP.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu meanwhile on Thursday accused the Palestinians of teaching their children that Israel "should be made to disappear."

The Israeli answer was to "continue building our country and our unified capital, Jerusalem," said the right-wing premier.

Jerusalem has been under Israeli occupation since 1967, along with the rest of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.
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1 ) Mel / USA
16/05/2014 01:59
Tzipi Livni ,on UK soil? Why the f**k wasn't she ARRESTED by Interpol? She's a WAR CRIMINAL responsible for the slaughter of 1,500 Gazan's(inlcd.400 CHILDREN/BABIES!)&MORE! She,Olmert,Barak &BibiYuhu should be ARRESTED,as soon as they stray OFF(pre-67)Israeli soil.They are ALL persona non grata war criminals! What,did she fly in on Kerry's jet?
Arrest the'No,no citizens in Gaza! baby killer!

2 ) Sarah / The Netherlands
16/05/2014 11:43
teaching their children that Israel "should be made to disappear." Maybe because "Israel" is a stolen banana republic, killing, stealing etc? And what is this stolen banana doing? Teaching their children Palestine never existed. Teaching their children Palestinians are the invaders and that Palestinians must leave because they are (according to Banana) from another country. Stop your nonsense Neet (Dutch word for lice egg).

3 ) Carol Scheller / Switzerland
16/05/2014 15:27
When will international figures give up this "two sides" line and recognize the one-sidedness of their stance ?

4 ) Heracles / Paris
16/05/2014 15:51
Mr Kerry, don't be 'concerned' !! ........................... get angry. More Palestinians murdered almost every day since the commencement of 'peace talks'. Always remember Netanyahu's insulting meeting with Obama when Netanyahu stated ..a] no return to pre-1967 borders, b] no right of return for Palestinians displaced refugees, etc etc, ie he formally and insultingly gave 'two-fingers' to Obama. Regrettably there is little or no chance of change of tactics by US during Obama's term.

5 ) @ Mel-1 & Sarah-2 / USA
16/05/2014 16:52
[a] Holding Violent Protests is NOT a right in any other nation, and police defending themselves against such violent Is a right in everywhere, and
[b] All the rest of your name-calling, nonsense, and lies is irrelevant !!

6 ) Colin Wright / USA
16/05/2014 17:36
What? Surely Kerry realizes that the regular murder of Palestinian youths is a vital part of the Zionist tradition. Israel just wouldn't be Israel without its rituals of human sacrifice.

7 ) Carlos / usa
16/05/2014 19:52
I commend Sarah-2 and Mel-1 for properly putting the brutal murder of these children by israel. israel is terror lies and murder. Please boycott divest and sanction israel.

8 ) JoeFattal / USA
16/05/2014 21:16
Israel will not exist without any conflict, and Palestinians suffering and resistance under Israeli rule result in israel continuance survival within its so call borders under their own interpretation of their Divine rights. And since their Divine rights cannot be recognize under the international community, they challenge Palestinians on religious ground to maintain and Justify their occupation. If Palestinians weren't around Israel would have been at war with Iran then and now.

9 ) Jenny Flintoft / UK
17/05/2014 02:23
Tzipi Livni is a war criminal, as simple as that, & our govt should be deeply ashamed of giving her immunity from prosecution.

10 ) Maureen / Australia
17/05/2014 10:25
Yeah right! Kerry's probably "concerned" if his tie is on straight as well!

11 ) JoeUSA / USA
17/05/2014 15:05
Kerry views Palestinians asking to Join UN Conventions and Institutions as an unhelpful steps. Under the same breath he views the shooting and killing of two 17 year old boys and a flood of illegal settlement expansion also as unhelpful steps . Twisted logic.

12 ) @ Carlos-7 / Truth
17/05/2014 16:48
Only another liar would "Commend" Liars, like Sarah and Mel, and below are three truths to counter, you THREE LIARS: -1- These were NOT "brutal MURDERS by Israel" (Self-Defense), and -2- These were NOT "CHILDREN" either, (Young Men), and -3- These young men went to an Israeli prison to threaten the ISRAELI guards, who were FORCED TO DEFEND themselves and the prison !!!

13 ) Yamas / Hungary
19/05/2014 01:40
The biggest problem is israel pushing back us to the barbarian age, there is no law international and human what they did not crossing or ignoring they are the worst official terrorist on the world ever ,also the after 18 century reestablish a country is nonsense,also killing and pushing out the palestinians from them own country .after they was only who give them land and shelter on this earth it is disgustingly ungrateful and raise up the question do anyone could live whit them in peace?

14 ) kerry / new zealand
28/05/2014 05:29
palestinians should go to the hague push its case in the International Court
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