News / Middle East

Kerry in Jordan to Jumpstart Middle East Peace Talks

Kerry in Jordan to Jumpstart Middle East Peace Talksi
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X
Scott Stearns
March 26, 2014 8:35 PM
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is in Jordan trying to salvage Mideast peace talks that are threatened by Israeli demands that Palestinians agree to extend the process before Israel releases more prisoners. At stake is a process that has struggled to produce even a framework for future talks. VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports from the Jordanian capital.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is in Jordan in hopes of jumpstarting Middle East peace talks, just as Arab leaders said they will never recognize Israel as a Jewish state.

Kerry met with Jordan's King Abdullah after arriving in Amman Wednesday. He plans to also hold talks with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in a bid to narrow gaps in peace negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians.

But at a summit in Kuwait Wednesday, the 22-member Arab League released a statement rejecting any consideration of Israel as the homeland of the Jewish people.

Kerry's talks in Amman come ahead of Israel's scheduled release of a fourth round of Palestinian prisoners.   

The releases are part of a deal that led the two sides to resume negotiations last year.  Israel has not confirmed Friday's release will take place, and Palestinian leaders have threatened to walk away from the peace talks if they do not.

Kerry is also due to speak with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, either by phone or video conference.

The parties involved in the peace talks have not publicly discussed the details of the negotiations, but there has been little visible progress on narrowing gaps on major issues. These include the status of Jerusalem, the fate of Palestinian refugees, borders and security.

Narrowing gaps

While U.S. officials say Kerry is here to "narrow the gaps" in peace talks, his more immediate challenge is figuring out what each side might be willing to continue if Israel refuses the prisoner release and if Palestinians respond by pushing tougher international sanctions against Israel.

Nothing has taken more of Kerry's time as secretary of state than Mideast peace. And his visit here underscores the seriousness of the threat to that process as he has broken away from President Obama's talks in Europe on the crisis in Ukraine.

American University professor Hillary Mann Leverett says Mideast peace talks are critical for Washington.

"Not only does it calm some of the tensions, allow some confidence-building measures among the parties to keep it relatively calm between Israelis and Palestinians," Leverett noted. "But even more importantly, strategically for the United States it allows other countries like the Saudis, like the Egyptians to partner with us in ways that would otherwise be impossible for them."

Not much progress

Former U.S. ambassador Adam Ereli says the Obama administration has made little progress convincing either side of the benefits of a two-state solution.

"The longer you go without a settlement the more unstable and explosive the situation becomes," the ambassador said. "But pushing the parties together and pushing the parties to compromise for less than what they think is their minimum required is going to be very difficult."

Among the issues dividing Israelis and Palestinians is security, the borders of a two-state solution, and the status of Jerusalem as a capital.

A State Department spokesperson says the secretary of state will travel to Brussels, Algiers and Rabat from April 1-3. In Brussels, Kerry will meet with counterparts to discuss the ongoing crisis in Ukraine. He will meet with senior officials in Algeria and Morocco.

You May Like

In China, Mixed Signals on Ebola Controls

How authorities are monitoring at-risk individuals remains unclear, including whether there are quarantines for Chinese health workers returning from West Africa More

Video Women Voters Anxious Ahead of US Elections

Analysts say if women are focused on national security, it could be bad news for Democrats More

Solar's Future Looks Brighter

New technology and dropping prices are contributing to a surge in solar power More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Majecli from: kenya
March 26, 2014 3:41 PM
they are try what they really don't want to happen, they are always and will be at the side of Israel Arab leaders will never recognize Juwish State so U.S take the Juwish to your great nation


by: MUSTAFA from: INDIA
March 26, 2014 2:24 PM
USA cannot solve palestine or any problem in the world.USA is CREATOR of problem in this world. For example Syria,Afghanistan, Libya,Iraq and Pakistan.The list is very long and endless. If the intention is to create problem,then this is good dream to think that palestine problem will be solve sooner.


by: MALIKA from: ALGERIA
March 26, 2014 11:43 AM
Mr KERRY visit to Algeria is ill timed. Election campaign is on going and the dictator Bouteflika will this as a support for his fourth round.
ATLAS TV, a channel hostile to the government has just been shut down. Freedoom of press?

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Women Voters Anxious Ahead of US Electionsi
X
October 31, 2014 4:10 AM
Public opinion polls show American voters are deeply dissatisfied with their government and anxious about threats from abroad. This is especially true for a key voting group both Republicans and Democrats are trying hard to win over: women. Analysts say if women are focused on national security, it could be bad news for Democrats, with majority control of the Senate at stake. VOA’s Cindy Saine looks at the crucial role women voters will play in deciding the elections.
Video

Video Women Voters Anxious Ahead of US Elections

Public opinion polls show American voters are deeply dissatisfied with their government and anxious about threats from abroad. This is especially true for a key voting group both Republicans and Democrats are trying hard to win over: women. Analysts say if women are focused on national security, it could be bad news for Democrats, with majority control of the Senate at stake. VOA’s Cindy Saine looks at the crucial role women voters will play in deciding the elections.
Video

Video Victorious Secularists Face Challenge to Form Government in Tunisia

Official results from Tunisia show the Islamist Ennahda party has failed to win the second free election since the so-called "Arab Spring" uprising in 2011. Ennahda, which handed power to a government of technocrats pending the elections, lost out to the secular party Nidaa Tounes. Henry Ridgwell reports from London that the relatively peaceful poll offers some hope in a volatile region.
Video

Video Africa Tells its Story Through Fashion

In Africa, Fashion Week is a riot of colors, shapes, patterns and fabrics - against the backdrop of its ongoing struggle between nature and its fast-growing urban edge. How do these ideas translate into needle and thread? VOA’s Anita Powell visited this year’s Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Africa in Johannesburg to find out.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.

All About America

AppleAndroid