Netanyahu. Aware of high stakes
Photo: Haim Zach

US, Israel seek 'creative' solution for settlements

Israeli officials say working with US to allow limited settlement construction after freeze ends

Israeli officials confirmed Monday that the government is in quiet talks with the United States in search of a "creative" solution that will allow at least some limited construction to take place after Israel's 10-month moratorium ends on Sept. 26.


The officials said Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is well aware of the high stakes ahead of the September 2 date marked for the launching of negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians.


"Many options are being discussed. It's not that simple," said Foreign Ministry spokesman Yigal Palmor.


In Washington, a US official confirmed the dialogue with Israel and said no decisions have been taken.


Palestinian officials said Monday that President Mahmoud Abbas had sent a letter to the US threatening to withdraw from the negotiations, which are set to begin next week in Washington, if the settlement freeze ends.


US State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley said Washington understands the issue's importance and will make sure it is discussed at the start of negotiations.


"We are very mindful of the Palestinian position, and once we are into direct negotiations we expect that both parties will do everything within their power to create an environment for those negotiations to continue constructively," he said.



פרסום ראשון: 08.24.10, 10:22
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