US special envoy David Hale meets Abbas 311 (R).
(photo credit: Mohamad Torokman / Reuters)
special envoy David Hale was scheduled to arrive in Jerusalem Wednesday
for separate talks with Israeli and Palestinian officials before
traveling to Cairo and Paris, US State Department spokeswoman Victoria
Nuland said Friday.Last
week, US Ambassador to Israel Dan Shapiro said both the US and the
Quartet expect Israel and the Palestinians to meet in direct
negotiations and exchange comprehensive proposals on issues of security
"I can confirm that on December 14, we expect
another round of meetings, Quartet envoys, with the Israelis and with
Palestinian representatives," Nuland said.
'US expects direct Israeli-Palestinian talks'
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The State Department
spokeswoman added that the moves are intended to further the US "effort
to get the two parties to put forward concrete proposals and to agree to
come back to the table together."
His comments were significant because the Palestinians have said in
recent days that while they have presented the Quartet – consisting of
the US, EU, UN and Russia – with comprehensive proposals, Israel has
refused to do so, creating the impression that Israel is obstructing the
Israel’s position is that the comprehensive proposals that the Quartet
discussed in September when it drew up a new framework for trying to
bring the sides back to the table are to come out of negotiations
between the sides, and not as result of the Quartet mediating between
Hale was scheduled to hold separate meetings with Israelis and Palestinians.
Shapiro’s comments appear to support Israel’s interpretation.
Herb Keinon contributed to this report.