Tags: abbas Netanyahu peace

Netanyahu and Abbas Open Mideast Peace Talks

Thursday, 02 Sep 2010 05:22 AM


WASHINGTON — The Israeli and Palestinian leaders were to open direct peace negotiations Thursday after committing to work to end the conflict that has endured for six decades, The New York Times reports.

The talks are to be held at the State Department, where they will take place under the eye of Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton. The negotiations follow a remarkable tableau at the White House Wednesday night, where President Obama, flanked by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel and President Mahmoud Abbas of the Palestinian Authority, vowed to do everything within his power in the next year to achieve the comprehensive agreement that has eluded negotiators since Israel was established.

“We are but five men,” Mr. Obama said Wednesday night. “But when we come together, we will not be alone. We will be joined by the generations of those who have gone before.”

In somber, emotional tones at the White House Wednesday night, Mr. Netanyahu and Mr. Abbas expressed their own determination to make peace.

Mr. Netanyahu, turning toward to Mr. Abbas, called him his “partner in peace.” He said he came to find a “historic compromise” but warned that any deal must be anchored in ensuring Israel’s security.

Mr. Abbas, for his part, said he would push hard despite “the difficulties we’re going to face tomorrow.” But he quickly foreshadowed the biggest early sticking point in the talks, calling for Mr. Netanyahu to freeze settlement activity in the West Bank.

For Mr. Netanyahu and Mr. Abbas, Thursday’s talks, with their very real chance of failure, represent a huge risk: President Bill Clinton’s failed attempt in 2000 led to the Palestinian intifada while President George W. Bush’s Annapolis peace attempt dissolved amid chronic violence in Gaza.

“Too much blood has already been shed, too many hearts have already been broken,” Mr. Obama said. “This moment of opportunity may not return soon again.”

Read the entire story at nytimes.com

© Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

 
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2010-22-02
Thursday, 02 Sep 2010 05:22 AM
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