U.S. Has Own Plan as Peace Talks Stall Over Israel’s Hardline Stance
The United States will present its own peace plan to Israeli and Palestinian negotiators, a senior Knesset member told Israeli media.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry told Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of his plan to intervene with his own draft agreement, after it appeared that staying on the sidelines did not help, Zahava Gal-On, chairman of the left-wing Meretz Party said in a statement Monday on the eve of Kerry’s scheduled visit to Jerusalem and Bethlehem.
Gal-On said she learned of the plan from Palestinian and U.S. officials. Israeli newspapers verified her claims, citing unnamed U.S. sources.
The plan will be based on the 1967 borders with land swaps and will also be based on the Arab League Peace Initiative, which will bring about regional peace, Gal-On told the Israeli daily Haaretz. It will be presented in January, she said.
The current round of peace talks, which began three months ago, is scheduled to last nine months. So far, Palestinian and Israeli negotiators have met 15 times for sessions lasting for several hours.
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas reportedly told his Fatah faction Monday that there has been no progress in the peace talks, and said they could break down over Israel’s announcement of new construction in West Bank settlements.
“After all the rounds of negotiations nothing is actually happening, and tensions may rise soon, since Israel says ‘we released prisoners and we can’t bear it, so we boost settlement construction’,” Abbas said, according to Ynet.
Meanwhile, Israeli media reported Tuesday that Israeli negotiators Justice Minister Tzipi Livni and Yitzhak Molcho, Netanyahu’s representative, are not in agreement on several issues, including settlement blocs and Jerusalem.