US and Israel hold "strategic dialogue" in Washington

October 24, 2013 06:17


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WASHINGTON - Israel and the United States engaged in a new round of Strategic Dialogue talks on Wednesday at the State Department in Washington, as Secretary of State John Kerry and Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu met in Rome to discuss negotiations with the Palestinians and Iran.

The State Department characterizes the Strategic Dialogue as "the highest level regularly-scheduled diplomatic meeting between the two countries." The last round of talks were held in July 2012.

"Both sides reiterated their determination to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon," reads a State Department press release. "The two delegations reviewed developments in Syria, including efforts to eliminate Syria’s chemical weapon program, as well as threats to regional stability from terrorist groups such as Lebanese Hizballah and Hamas."

State Department deputy spokeswoman Marie Harf told reporters on Wednesday that the two sides engage in near-daily exchanges on the twin issues-- the peace process with the Palestinians and the Iranian nuclear program-- and expected no great news developments to arise from this round of Strategic Dialogue talks to emerge.

"We have conversations at all levels regularly," Harf said. "These are topics we discuss all the time."

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