News / Middle East

US, Jordan Urge Speedy Upgrade in Middle East Peace Talks

Multimedia

Audio

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Jordanian Foreign Minister Nasser Judeh called for an early upgrade Thursday of U.S.-mediated proximity talks between Israel and the Palestinians into full-scale direct negotiations.  The Jordanian minister said there would be tangible Arab support for such a process.

The U.S.-Jordanian meeting came only two days after a White House visit by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in which he told President Obama his government is prepared to take concrete steps to upgrade the indirect talks.

Standing alongside her Jordanian counterpart, Secretary Clinton said they both believe moving to direct talks as soon as possible is in the best interest of everyone in the region.

"We believe that all the issues that need to be resolved between the parties must be discussed in direct negotiations," said Clinton.  "The sooner that the Israelis and Palestinian get into direct negotiations, the sooner they can actually make decisions.  That's the way it's worked in the past, that is the only way it can work today."

Foreign Minister Judeh, for his part, said the atmospherics of the indirect talks being mediated by U.S. Middle east envoy George Mitchell seem to be encouraging, and provide a lot of room for hope.

The Jordanian official said the 2002 Arab League peace initiative offers the prospect of full, normalized relations between Israel and 57 Arab and Islamic countries, if there is a final peace accord providing for Israel withdrawal from occupied areas.  He said in the interim, Arab states are prepared to tangibly support full peace negotiations.

"I think once direct negotiations resume, you will see an engagement by the overall Arab context and tangible support that you refer to," said Judeh.  "But let's not put the cart before the horse. Let's try to get a process going, not an open-ended process, not another timeless kind of engagement.  We need to see benchmarks and we need to see traction on the ground."

The Jordanian Foreign Minister was not specific about what tangible support for peace talks might entail.  U.S. envoy Mitchell has long been urging moderate Arab states to make confidence-building gestures toward Israel, such as granting airline over-flight rights and reopening trade missions closed after the Gaza conflict between Israel and Hamas at the end of 2008.

Key U.S. Arab allies, including Saudi Arabia, have rejected such steps, which Mitchell says would encourage a political consensus for peace in Israel.

Foreign Minister Judeh, whose country signed a peace treaty with Israel in 1994, said a conducive environment for full peace talks requires an end to what he termed provocative and unilateral actions by Israel in occupied areas, including housing demolitions and evictions of Palestinians.

Judeh said direct talks should resume at the point they broke off in 2008, when the Palestinian Authority and government of former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert were said to be in broad agreement on the outlines of a Palestinian state.

Clinton said such a state should be independent, viable and contiguous with borders based on pre-1967 truce lines, but with agreed land swaps and reflecting subsequent developments.

You May Like

Video Obama Announces Plan to Send 3,000 Troops to Liberia in Ebola Fight

At US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Obama details troop deployment and other pieces of US plan More

Video China Muslims Work to Change Perceptions After Knife Attacks

Muslims in Kunming say that they condemn the violence, it is not a reflection of the true beliefs of their faith More

Humanitarian Aid, Equipment Blocked in Cameroon

Move is seen as a developing supply crisis in West Africa More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Enviropreneur Seeks to Save the Environment, Empower the Communityi
X
September 16, 2014 2:06 PM
Lorna Rutto, a former banker, is now an ‘enviropreneur’ - turning plastic waste into furniture and fences discusses the challenges she faces in Africa with raw materials and the environment.
Video

Video Enviropreneur Seeks to Save the Environment, Empower the Community

Lorna Rutto, a former banker, is now an ‘enviropreneur’ - turning plastic waste into furniture and fences discusses the challenges she faces in Africa with raw materials and the environment.
Video

Video West Trades Accusations Over Ransoms

As world leaders try to forge a common response to the threat posed by Islamic State militants in Iraq and Syria, there is simmering tension over differing policies on paying ransoms. In the past month, the jihadist group has beheaded two Americans and one Briton. Both countries refuse to pay ransom money. As Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London, there is uncertainty in the approach of some other European nations.
Video

Video Scotland Independence Bid Stokes Global Interest

The people of Scotland are preparing to vote on whether to become independent and break away from the rest of Britain, in a referendum being watched carefully in many other countries. Some see it as a risky experiment; while others hope a successful vote for independence might energize their own separatist demands. Foreign immigrants to Scotland have a front row seat for the vote. VOA’s Henry Ridgwell spoke to some of them in Edinburgh.
Video

Video Washington DC Mural Artists Help Beautify City

Like many cities, Washington has a graffiti problem. Buildings and homes, especially in low-income neighborhoods, are often targets of illegal artwork. But as we hear from VOA’s Julie Taboh, officials in the nation's capital have come up with an innovative program that uses the talents of local artists to beautify the city.
Video

Video US Muslim Leaders Condemn Islamic State

Leaders of America's Muslim community are condemning the violent extremism of the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria. The U.S. Muslim leaders say militants are exploiting their faith in a failed effort to justify violent extremism. VOA correspondent Meredith Buel reports.
Video

Video Americans' Reaction Mixed on Obama Strategy for Islamic State Militants

President Barack Obama’s televised speech on how the United States plans to “degrade and destroy” the group known as the Islamic State reached a prime-time audience of millions. And it came as Americans appear more willing to embrace a bolder, tougher approach to foreign policy. VOA producer Katherine Gypson and reporter Jeff Seldin have this report from Washington.
Video

Video Authorities Allege LA Fashion Industry-Cartel Ties

U.S. officials say they have broken up crime rings that funneled tens of millions of dollars from Mexican drug cartels through fashion businesses in Los Angeles. Mike O'Sullivan reports that authorities announced nine arrests, as 1,000 law enforcement agents fanned out through the city on Wednesday.
Video

Video Bedouin Woman Runs Successful Business in Palestinian City

A Bedouin woman is breaking social taboos by running a successful vacation resort in the Palestinian town of Jericho. Bedouins are a sub-group of Arabs known for their semi-nomadic lifestyle. Zlatica Hoke says the resort in the West Bank's Jordan Valley is a model of success for women in the region.


Carnage and mayhem are part of daily life in northern Nigeria, the result of a terror campaign by the Islamist group Boko Haram. Fears are growing that Nigeria’s government may not know how to counter it, and may be making things worse. More

AppleAndroid