Israeli and Palestinian peace negotiators reportedly made no progress in a three-hour meeting aimed at resuming peace negotiations.
The meeting Sunday night was without U.S. mediation. Meetings are scheduled to resume on either Tuesday evening or Wednesday evening, when the U.S. envoy to the peace talks, Martin Indyk, is set to return to the region and attend, the French news agency AFP reported, citing an unnamed Palestinian source close to the talks. Indyk had returned to Washington last week for consultations.
At the meeting, Israeli peace negotiator Tzipi Livni demanded that the Palestinians withdraw their applications to the international conventions, which the Palestinians rejected, the Palestinian Maan news service reported Monday. Maan also reported that Palestinian negotiators demanded a complete freeze on building in Jewish settlements in eastern Jerusalem and the West Bank before being willing to discuss other issues.
Negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority broke down following Israel’s failure to meet its pledge in a prisoner release, followed by the Palestinian Authority applying to join 15 international conventions in an apparent violation of the agreement between Israel and the Palestinians to resume negotiations. In response, Israel late last week said it would freeze the transfer of taxes it collects on the Palestinians’ behalf.