Martin Indyk, the chief U.S. negotiator between the Israelis and Palestinians, resigned Friday in a further sign of the collapse of the peace process.
Less than a year after Secretary of State John Kerry tapped the veteran diplomat as part of a major U.S. push for a peace deal, Indyk quit to return to his position at the Brookings Institution think tank.
Indyk, who was born in Britain and raised in Australia, formerly worked for the main pro-Israel lobby in Washington, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, and took U.S. citizenship in 1993 as he joined the administration of then-president Bill Clinton.
Indyk served twice as U.S. ambassador to Israel — from 1995-1997 and 2000-2001 — and played a key role in Clinton's failed efforts to broker a Middle East peace settlement, including at the Camp David summit between then-Israeli prime minister Ehud Barak and Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat.
Israel voiced anger after an unnamed U.S. official — widely believed to be Indyk — was quoted by the Yedioth Ahronoth newspaper as blaming Israel for the breakdown in talks and saying that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu "did not move more than an inch."
© AFP 2014