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PA-Israel proximity talks begin

9 May 2010 14:55

The chief negotiator of the Palestinian Authority (PA) announces the start of indirect talks with Israel which are to be held with the US mediation.

The PA’s chief negotiator, Saeb Erekat, made the announcement in the city of Ramallah on Sunday, AFP reported.

The talks were stalled in March after Israel announced plans to build some 2,000 settler units in East al-Quds (Jerusalem). Israel occupied al-Quds as part of the West Bank in 1967 and later annexed it.

The Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) on Saturday agreed to resume the talks which are mediated by the United States Middle East envoy, George Mitchell.

The chairman of the PLO’s Executive Committee, Mahmoud Abbas, had said earlier that Tel Aviv had to choose between peace and continuing settlement construction on the Palestinian lands.

The Palestinian resistance movement Hamas had, meanwhile, condemned the resumption of the negotiations, arguing that the move would only serve to facilitate further “Israeli violations” against Palestinians.

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