News / Middle East

Palestinian Negotiating Team Resigns

FILE - Palestinian chief negotiator Saeb Erekat speaks during an interview with Reuters in Ramallah, Aug. 11, 2013.
FILE - Palestinian chief negotiator Saeb Erekat speaks during an interview with Reuters in Ramallah, Aug. 11, 2013.
VOA News
Peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians appear to have hit another stumbling block, this time with the resignation of the Palestinian negotiating team.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas Wednesday told Egyptian television his negotiators resigned due to a lack of progress. He told CBC television he would try to convince them to reconsider or put a new team in place. Abbas said in either case, any further talks would have to be delayed.

In an interview Wednesday with Reuters, chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat refused to elaborate on his reported resignation but said talks with Israel were going nowhere.

"In reality, the negotiations stopped last week, to be honest, in light of the settlement announcements last week," he said. "We face on a daily basis Israeli behavior and actions that are related to settlement and the killing in cold blood, settler terrorism under the protection of the Israeli soldiers, home demolition, to propose laws in the Israeli Knesset that aim to divide the holy Al-Aqsa Mosque etc. All the Israeli behaviors whether on the negotiation table or on the ground if they show anything they show one thing and that is, making Kerry fail and they [Israelis] alone should be held responsible.''

Israel's Housing Ministry announced plans Tuesday for about 20,000 new homes in contested parts of Jerusalem and the West Bank. But Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu later reversed the decision, saying it would hurt Israel's efforts to ensure world powers maintain stiff sanctions on Iran over Tehran's controversial nuclear program.

Still, on Wednesday, Israel's minister for strategic affairs, Yuval Steinitz, tried to make clear the prime minister's order was in no way a change in policy.

"Prime Minster Netanyahu made it very clear, that we are going to release some prisoners but there is no freeze in the settlements. It's not just theoretically, we will build in the settlements during the negotiations. I don't suggest that this is kind of agreement, but let me be very accurate, this was clearly understood by all three sides, the Israelis the Palestinians the Americans,'' said Steinitz.

Israel's continued settlement building has been a major point of contention during the resumption of peace talks with the Palestinians.

Tensions between Israelis and Palestinians rose again Wednesday following the fatal stabbing of an Israeli soldier in northern Israel.

Israeli officials say they have arrested a 16-year-old Palestinian in connection with the incident, which took place on a bus in the town of Afula.

You May Like

Changing Under Pressure, IS ‘Potent’ as Ever

US intel officials describe Ramadi's fall as concerning, but say it isn't emblematic of larger effort to degrade IS capabilities More

Nigeria Fuel Shortage Shows Fragility of Africa’s Oil Giant

Although it is the largest oil producer in Africa, country has nearly ran out of fuel it needs to power its generators, cars and airplanes over the past week More

Arrested Football Officials Come Mainly From the Americas

US Justice Department alleges defendants participated in 24-year scheme to enrich themselves through corruption of international soccer More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
3D Printer Makes Replica of Iconic Sports Cari
|| 0:00:00
...    
🔇
X
George Putic
May 27, 2015 9:31 PM
Cars with parts made by 3D printers are already on the road, but engineers are still learning about this new technology. While testing the possibility of printing an entire car, researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy recently created an electric-powered replica of an iconic sports roadster. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video 3D Printer Makes Replica of Iconic Sports Car

Cars with parts made by 3D printers are already on the road, but engineers are still learning about this new technology. While testing the possibility of printing an entire car, researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy recently created an electric-powered replica of an iconic sports roadster. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video US Voters Seek Answers From Presidential Candidates on IS Gains

The growth of the Islamic State militant group in Iraq and Syria comes as the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign kicks off in the Midwest state of Iowa.   As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, voters want to know how the candidates would handle recent militant gains in the Middle East.
Video

Video A Small Oasis on Kabul's Outskirts Provides Relief From Security Tensions

When people in Kabul want to get away from the city and relax, many choose Qargha Lake, a small resort on the outskirts of Kabul. Ayesha Tanzeem visited and talked with people about the precious oasis.
Video

Video Film Festival Looks at Indigenous Peoples, Culture Conflict

A recent Los Angeles film festival highlighted the plight of people caught between two cultures. Mike O'Sullivan has more on the the Garifuna International Film Festival, a Los Angeles forum created by a woman from Central America who wants the world to know more about her culture.
Video

Video Kenyans Lament Losing Sons to al-Shabab

There is agony, fear and lost hope in the Kenyan town of Isiolo, a key target of a new al-Shabab recruitment drive. VOA's Mohammed Yusuf visits Isiolo to speak with families and at least one man who says he was a recruiter.
Video

Video Scientists Say Plankton More Important Than Previously Thought

Tiny ocean creatures called plankton are mostly thought of as food for whales and other large marine animals, but a four-year global study discovered, among other things, that plankton are a major source of oxygen on our planet. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video US-led Coalition Gives Some Weapons to Iraqi Troops

In a video released Tuesday from the Iraqi Ministry of Defense, Iraqi forces and U.S.-led coalition troops survey a cache of weapons supplied to help Iraq liberate Mosul from Islamic State group. According to a statement provided with the video, the ministry and the U.S.-led coaltion troops have started ''supplying the 16th army division with medium and light weapons in preparation to liberate Mosul and nearby areas from Da'esh (Arabic acronym for Islamic State group).''
Video

Video Amnesty International: 'Overwhelming Evidence' of War Crimes in Ukraine

Human rights group Amnesty International says there is overwhelming evidence of ongoing war crimes in Ukraine, despite a tentative cease-fire with pro-Russian rebels. Researchers interviewed more than 30 prisoners from both sides of the conflict and all but one said they were tortured. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Washington Parade Honors Those Killed Serving in US Military

Every year, on the last Monday in the month of May, millions of Americans honor the memories of those killed while serving in the armed forces. Memorial Day is a tradition that dates back to the 19th Century. While many people celebrate the federal holiday with a barbecue and a day off from work, for those who’ve served in the military, it’s a special day to remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice. Arash Arabasadi reports for VOA from Washington.
Video

Video Kenya’s Capital Sees Rise in Shisha Parlors

In Kenya, the smoking of shisha, a type of flavored tobacco, is the latest craze. Patrons are flocking to shisha parlors to smoke and socialize. But the practice can be addictive and harmful, though many dabblers may not realize the dangers, according to a new review. Lenny Ruvaga has more on the story for VOA from Nairobi, Kenya.
Video

Video Rolling Thunder Run Reveals Changed Attitudes Towards Vietnam War

For many US war veterans, the Memorial Day holiday is an opportunity to look back at a divisive conflict in the nation’s history and to remember those who did not make it home.
Video

Video Female American Soldiers: Healing Through Filmmaking

According to the United States Defense Department, there are more than 200-thousand women serving in the U.S. Armed Forces.  Like their male counterparts, females have experiences that can be very traumatic.  VOA's Bernard Shusman tells us about a program that is helping some American women in the military heal through filmmaking.

VOA Blogs