Here he comes again....
US Secretary of State John Kerry is returning to our region again at the end of this week to try to 'narrow the gaps
' between Israel and the 'Palestinians.' But it appears that much of what was reported on Saturday in al-Hayat
as being part of the plan has not yet been agreed. This is from the first link.
In fact, [Kerry's senior adviser on the 'peace process,' Frank] Lowenstein is trying to get the parties to agree to a
document that would contain the principles for the renewal of talks, but
no agreement has emerged. For example, Netanyahu has agreed to consider
an unofficial hiatus in new construction outside the large settlement
blocs during the period of the talks. But the Palestinians still want an
official statement by the Israeli government that all construction in
the settlements is being stopped.
With regard to prisoners, the Shin Bet
security service has informed Netanyahu of its opposition to the
release of a few dozen prisoners on the Palestinians’ list. Netanyahu
has agreed to the release of some 60 prisoners, but only after the
renewal of talks, and only in a phased manner.
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas wants all the prisoners released at once.
for basing the talks on the 1967 lines, a senior Israeli official said
that if talks are renewed, Kerry will announce that they will be based
on the 1967 lines with exchanges of territory. This would allow both the
Palestinians and Israelis to present their public objections to the
issue, while accepting it in principle.
senior officials close to the talks had two different opinions on the
progress being made. One said the gaps were getting smaller, while the
other said the talks were “one step forward, two steps backward.”
over the weekend at the town of Kfar Yasif in the Western Galilee,
Erekat said the Palestinians had presented their positions to the
Americans and were waiting for a response.
Palestinian official told Haaretz that, even if the plan has been
correctly reported, this does not mean the Palestinians will accept it
as is. The Palestinians particularly object to recognition of Israel as a
Jewish state, and to a construction freeze only outside the large
settlement blocs, the official said.
Same old, same old.....
Labels: Abu Mazen, Binyamin Netanyahu, John Kerry, Middle East peace process