Clinton says PA UN bid is stalled, calls for renewed talks

US secretary of state says US won't cut funding to UN organization that support Palestinian membership; Quartet calls for talks in Jordan.

By REUTERS, JPOST.COM STAFF
October 12, 2011 00:06
1 minute read.
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

hillary clinton_311 reuters. (photo credit: REUTERS/Tony Gentile)

 
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The Palestinian push for UN membership is not going anywhere for now, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said on Tuesday, making the case that the Palestinians should resume peace talks with Israel.

Clinton also said she has asked the US Congress to allow the United States to keep funding UN agencies that grant the Palestinians membership, saying cutting off bodies like the International Atomic Energy Agency would hurt US interests.

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The US had previously threatened to cut funding from UN organization like UNESCO, that had voted for Palestinian membership.

The US State Department in Washington also announced Tuesday night that the so-called Quartet of Middle East mediators has proposed a meeting between Israeli and Palestinian Authority representatives in Jordan, Israel Radio reported.

State Department spokesperson Victoria Nuland said that these would be the initial talks in renewed peace negotiations, and expressed hope that the two sides would respond positively to the proposal.

The announcement follows a statement from EU Foreign Affairs chief Catherine Ashton on Sunday, who said that the Quartet has decided to call on Palestinians and Israelis to return to the negotiating table.

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu said on Monday that he would be willing to sit down with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas any time.



The Palestinians have called for a complete settlement freeze before returning to negotiations.

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