obama pointing 311.
(photo credit: AP)
US President Barack Obama said Thursday that he's working to get the
Israelis and Palestinians to resume peace talks.
At a town hall meeting in Tampa, Obama declined
under questioning to condemn
for actions against the Palestinians. He said
is a strong ally and that
he will never waver from helping
keep its people safe in a hostile Middle East.
also said the situation facing the Palestinian people is one that needs
attention. He said he is seeking a solution in which Israelis and Palestinians
can live side by side in peace. But both parties must return to the bargaining
table, and that is something Obama said he is
working to achieve.
The administration's efforts to
jump start peace talks have stalled since Obama took office a year ago.
president on Thursday blamed internal political strife in as well
as among the Palestinians for hampering the peace process.
He spoke of problems that Prime
Minister Binyamin Netanyahu had had to deal with within his own governing
coalition, saying that the premier "is making efforts to move a little bit
further than his coalition wants to go."
Obama said that while Palestinian Authority President
Mahmoud Abbas genuinely desires peace, he has had to deal with the terrorist
group Hamas, whose power and grip on the Gaza Strip has only grown in recent
While Obama referred to
as "one of our strongest allies," he also stated that the plight of
the Palestinians is something that cannot be ignored. Obama went on to say that
it is not good for 's
security to have millions of individuals feeling hopeless.