U.S. Efforts to Revive Middle East Peace Process Appear to Run Adrift

(Telegraph-UK) Robert Tait - Palestinian sources said U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry during his current visit to Israel and the West Bank suggested reviving the Arab Peace Initiative - first proposed by King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia in 2002 - as a basis for re-starting talks between Israel and the Palestinians, which have been stalled for the past three years. Kerry was said to have proposed wording that would soften the initiative's demand for Israel to withdraw to pre-1967 borders, saying they could be modified by mutual agreement, while inserting stronger security guarantees for Israel. "Kerry asked us to change a few words in the Arab Peace Initiative but we refused," said Saeb Erekat, the chief Palestinian negotiator. The plan, which calls for Israel's complete withdrawal from the West Bank and east Jerusalem, has been accepted by the Arab League but rejected by Israeli leaders on the grounds that it would leave the county with indefensible borders.

2013-04-09 00:00:00

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