US, Israel Make 'Good Progress' in Peace Talks

World | July 28, 2009, Tuesday // 13:55
US, Israel Make 'Good Progress' in Peace Talks: US, Israel Make 'Good Progress' in Peace Talks US Middle East envoy George Mitchell (L) and Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu (R). Photo by BGNES

US Middle East envoy George Mitchell and Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu say talks about reviving the regional peace process have made "good progress".

There was no mention of Israel agreeing to halt settlement construction, a key demand the US has made of its ally, the BBC reported.

Netanyahu has previously rejected such a freeze, saying "natural growth" of settlements must be allowed.

Mitchell is one of several senior US officials in the region pushing for a comprehensive Middle East peace deal.

The Palestinians have said all Israeli settlement building on occupied territory must cease before talks can resume.

After a nearly three-hour meeting that was expected to focus on the settlements issue, the men spoke briefly to reporters. There was no mention of settlements.

"Good progress" was made, said Mitchell, an experienced diplomat who negotiated the Northern Ireland peace agreement.

 

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Tags: US, Israel, peace process, settlements
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