US gives deadlines for Israel-Palestinian action

The US has submitted a document to Israelis and Palestinians with detailed deadlines for steps both sides are expected to take to improve movement of Palestinian people and goods and improving security in Gaza, such as removing West Bank roadblocks and halting rocket fire on Israel, chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat said Friday. The document is in line with a more hands-on approach to peacemaking by the US in recent weeks. US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice was expected to return to the region to discuss the benchmarks with both sides, but Erekat said no date has been set. Erekat said the Palestinians welcome the document and would study it carefully. There was no immediate Israeli comment.