Friday, October 9, 2009

No breakthrough in Peace talks as Mitchell and Netanyahu meet in J'lem

Although the Obama administration apparently hoped US Middle East envoy George Mitchell's current visit would yield an announcement on the resumption of direct Israeli-Palestinian talks, a meeting between Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Mitchell in Jerusalem on Friday ended without any statements issued to the press.

American and Israeli officials on Thursday said they had little hope of a breakthrough ahead of Mitchell's meeting on Friday with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu.

According to one senior Israeli official, the ball is currently in the Palestinian court, and it is unclear whether Abbas is politically able to conduct meaningful negotiations.

The Prime Minister's Office has announced that the meeting between Benjamin Netanyahu and the US envoy to the Middle East, George Mitchell, was "useful and productive" and focused on the promotion of the peace process.

The office added that Netanyahu and Mitchell would be holding another meeting Saturday, with the participation of the prime ministers envoys to Palestinian affairs, Mike Herzog and Yitzhak Molcho.