US Secretary of State John Kerry is set to arrive in Israel and meet with both Israeli and Palestinian leaders Tuesday, but stressed on Monday in Abu Dhabi that "People aren't in the mood for concessions," offering little hope that his visit will help stem the current wave of violence.
A Palestinian knifed an Israeli to death in the West Bank on Monday and in Jerusalem two Palestinian girls stabbed an elderly man with scissors before a policeman shot them both, killing one.
The attacks were part of a surge of attacks that began two months ago and has stirred US consternation.
Kerry oversaw a round of peace negotiations that stalled in April 2014, and he was circumspect about his latest mission.
"This is an effort to see if we can get some concrete steps in place - begin to build them, maybe - that could calm things down a little bit so people aren't living in absolute, daily terror that they might be stabbed or driven into or shot trying to walk around their city," he said.
"It happens almost every day over there and it's terrible, and too many Israelis have been killed and stabbed, and too many Palestinians," Kerry told reporters. "And there's no excuse for any of the violence."
Eighty-six Palestinians have been killed since October 1, some while carrying out attacks and others in clashes with Israeli forces. Palestinian attacks have killed 23, including an American.
It is the worst unrest since last year's Gaza war, prompting talk of a new Palestinian uprising, or Intifada, against Israel. The first intifada lasted from 1987-1993 and the second from 2000-2005, although both were far more intense and deadly.
Kerry said Washington was "perfectly prepared to work and (has) ideas for how things could proceed" to stem the bloodshed. But he cautioned: "People aren't in the mood for concessions."