Tags: EU | Clinton | Russia

Clinton Calls Israel Rift a Challenge

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has described a rift with Israel over a Jerusalem construction project as a challenge, avoiding criticism of Tel Aviv.

Clinton on Thursday called for a relaunch of negotiations between Palestinians and Israelis in an effort to achieve a two-state solution. She said the U.S. is still committed to brokering a peace deal.

She is in Moscow for talks among the Quartet of Middle East peace mediators — the U.S., Russia, the EU and the U.N.

Hopes for talks faded last week after Israel announced the construction of 1,600 apartments for Jews in disputed east Jerusalem, during an official visit by U.S. Vice President Joe Biden.

The announcement caused a diplomatic crisis, and Clinton last week called the plan a "a deeply negative signal."

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.

MOSCOW (AP) — U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton has urged Russia to delay launching Iran's nuclear plant until Tehran proves that it's not pursuing atomic weapons.

Clinton made the statement Thursday when asked about Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin's statement that Iran's first nuclear reactor is set to be launched this summer.

Clinton said Iran is entitled to civil atomic energy, but added that it would be premature to go forward with any nuclear project when Tehran has yet to prove the peaceful nature of its program.

The U.S. and other nations are concerned that Iran has been trying to secretly develop nuclear weapons.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov responded that Russia still intends to launch the plant in the Iranian port city of Bushehr. Both spoke after their talks in Moscow.

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U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has described a rift with Israel over a Jerusalem construction project as a challenge, avoiding criticism of Tel Aviv.Clinton on Thursday called for a relaunch of negotiations between Palestinians and Israelis in an effort to achieve...
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