Israel pins hope on U.S. delegation for peace talks resumption

Source: Xinhua| 2017-08-13 21:36:12|Editor: Zhou Xin
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JERUSALEM, Aug. 13 (Xinhua) -- Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Sunday that Israel welcomes a delegation that U.S. President Donald Trump will send later this month to the Middle East in an effort to reignite the peace talks.

"President Trump will soon send his representatives, Jared Kushner and Jason Greenblatt, for talks in the region including, of course, in Jerusalem, in an effort to advance the peace process," Netanyahu told his weekly cabinet meeting. "We will welcome them as always," he added.

On Friday, the White House said Jared Kushner, Trump's son-in-law and his senior adviser, and negotiator Jason Greenblatt would soon be sent to the region to hold meetings with regional leaders and discuss a "path to substantive Israeli-Palestinian peace talks."

They will meet leaders from Saudi Arabia, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt, Jordan, Israel and the Palestinian National Authority, a white house official said.

Trump believe regional talks are important but he "reaffirms that peace between Israelis and Palestinians can only be negotiated directly between the two parties and that the United States will continue working closely with the parties to make progress towards that goal," the official added.

Kushner was appointed to help broker a deal between Israel and the Palestinians after Trump took office in January.

During his first trip to the region in May, Trump visited Saudi Arabia, Israel and the West Bank. He promised to bring "the ultimate deal" between Israel and the Palestinians but did not specify how he would do it.

He also called for a regional alliance to defeat terror. He said Saudi Arabia and Israel share similar interests and called for a coalition in the region to end terrorism and find peace.

The latest round of talks between Israel and the Palestinians broke down in 2014, mainly over Israel's expansion of Jewish settlements in the West Bank.