Saturday, September 19, 2009

Israeli settlements block peace talks

Morning Star Online, 18 September 2009

by Tom Mellen

Washington’s special Middle East envoy has failed to bridge the gulf between the right-wing Israeli administration and Palestinian negotiators on the terms of renewing peace talks.

US officials said that mediation efforts would continue, but the persistent differences raise doubts about Mr Obama’s plans to revive long-stalled peace efforts, including holding a trilateral meeting with the Israeli and Palestinian leaders next week in New York on the sidelines of the UN general assembly.

The key differences are over Israel’s refusal to stop the expansion of illegal settlements in the occupied territories and whether peace talks should begin where they left off under the previous administration of Ehud Olmert.

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