News / Middle East

Formal Mideast Peace Negotiations to Begin by Mid-August

Formal Mideast Peace Negotiations to Begin by Mid-Augusti
X
July 31, 2013 12:16 AM
Israeli and Palestinian negotiators held a second and final day of preliminary, face-to-face talks in Washington Tuesday. The talks included a meeting with President Obama at the White House. VOA's Suzanne Presto has more from the State Department about efforts to lay the groundwork for a Mideast peace agreement.
Suzanne Presto
Israeli and Palestinian negotiators held a second and final day of preliminary, face-to-face talks in Washington Tuesday. The talks included a meeting with President Obama at the White House. 

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, with Palestinian chief negotiator Saeb Erekat and Israeli Justice Minister Tzipi Livni, said the goal is to reach a final status agreement during the next nine months.    

"We all understand the goal that we're working toward: two states living side by side in peace and security," he said. "Two states because two proud peoples each deserve a country to call their own."

Kerry said all final status issues are up for negotiation, which would include security, borders, refugees and the status of Jerusalem. The parties have agreed to what Kerry called "sustained, continuous, and substantive negotiations" on the issues, and will meet within the next two weeks in Israel or the Palestinian Territories.  

Talks fell apart three years ago over Israeli settlement building.   

Palestinian negotiator Erekat said Palestinians have the most to gain from an agreement.

"I am delighted that all final status issues are on the table and will be resolved without any exceptions, and it's time for the Palestinian people to have an independent, sovereign state of their own," he said.

Israel's security is critical, said Justice Minister Livni.

"We came here today from a troubled and changing region," she said. "We are hopeful, but we cannot be naive.  We cannot afford it in our region."

The U.S. stands to gain if it can help increase stability in the Middle East, says Lucy Kurtzer-Ellenbogen of the U.S. Institute of Peace in Washington.

"You look around at the region, which is in turmoil, and there is a lot of uncertainty," she said. "The Israeli-Palestinian conflict is one area ironically - because people have always seen it as the ultimate intractable conflict - but this is one area where the U.S. still does have influence with both of the parties."
 
Obama traveled to Israel in March, a trip that is credited with helping to renew direct talks between the Israelis and Palestinians.

You May Like

Sydney Hostage-taker Failed to Manipulate Social Media

Gunman forced captives to use personal Facebook, YouTube accounts to issue his demands; online community helped flag messages, urged others not to share them More

UN Seeks $8.4 Billion to Help War-Hit Syrians

Effort aimed at helping Syrians displaced within their own country and those who've fled to neighboring ones More

Who Are the Pakistani Taliban?

It's an umbrella group of militant organizations whose objective is enforcement of Sharia in Pakistan 'whether through peace or war' More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Will Pakistan School Shooting Galvanize Pakistan Against Extremism?i
X
Ayesha Tanzeem
December 17, 2014 11:54 AM
The attack on a military school in Pakistan’s northwest city of Peshawar left 141 dead, including 132 children. Strong statements of condemnation poured in from across the world. The country announced three days of mourning, and the leadership, both political and military, promised retribution. VOA's Ayesha Tanzeem looks at how likely the Pakistani government is to clamp down on all extremist groups.
Video

Video Will Pakistan School Shooting Galvanize Pakistan Against Extremism?

The attack on a military school in Pakistan’s northwest city of Peshawar left 141 dead, including 132 children. Strong statements of condemnation poured in from across the world. The country announced three days of mourning, and the leadership, both political and military, promised retribution. VOA's Ayesha Tanzeem looks at how likely the Pakistani government is to clamp down on all extremist groups.
Video

Video ‘Anti-Islamization’ Marches Increase Tensions In Germany

Anti-immigrant rallies in Germany have been building in recent weeks, peaking Monday night in the city of Dresden where tens of thousands of people turned out to demonstrate against what they call the ‘Islamization’ of the West. Germany has offered asylum to more Syrian refugees than any other country, and this appears to have set off the protests. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.
Video

Video Refugees Living in Kenya Long for Peace in the Home Countries

Kenya is host to numerous refugees seeking safe haven from conflict. Immigrants from Somalia face challenges in their new lives in Kenya. Ahead of International Migrants Day (December 18) Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.
Video

Video Turkey's Authoritarianism Dismays Western Allies

The Turkish government has been defiant in the face of criticism at home and abroad for its raids targeting opposition media. The European Union on Monday expressed dismay after President Recep Tayyip Erdogan lashed out at Brussels for criticizing his government's action. Turkey's bid to be considered for EU membership has been on hold while critics accuse the NATO ally of increasingly authoritarian rule. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video US-China Year in Review: Hong Kong to Climate Change

The United States is pushing for a code of conduct to resolve territorial disputes in the South China Sea as it works to improve commercial ties with Beijing. VOA State Department correspondent Scott Stearns reports on a year of U.S. policy toward China from Hong Kong to climate change.
Video

Video Japanese Leader’s Election Win Raises Potential for Conflict with Neighbors

Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and his allies easily won a two-thirds majority in parliament Sunday, even though the country has slipped into recession under his conservative policies. VOA’s Brian Padden reports from Seoul, that the prime minister’s victory will empower him to continue economic reforms but also pursue a nationalist agenda that will likely increase tensions with Japan’s neighbors.
Video

Video Nuba Mountain Families Hide in Caves to Escape Aerial Bombings

Despite ongoing peace talks between Sudan's government and the rebel Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North, or SPLM-N, daily aerial attacks continue in South Kordofan province’s Nuba Mountains. Adam Bailes was there and reports for VOA that government forces are targeting civilian areas, rather than military positions, with their daily bombardments.

All About America

AppleAndroid