Israeli-Palestinian peace talks continue despite serious setbacks

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Politics,White House,John Kerry,Israel,National Security,PennAve,Susan Crabtree,State Department,Palestinians

The Mideast peace talks are showing signs of life after nearly foundering last week with Israeli and Palestinian negotiators meeting Sunday night to discuss ways to jump-start the process, according to a State Department spokeswoman.

“Israeli and Palestinian negotiators met last night to discuss ways to overcome the crisis in the talks,” said State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki.

Psaki said the meeting was “serious and constructive” and “both sides requested that the United States convene another meeting today to continue the effort.”

The talks nearly collapsed last week after moves from both sides that threatened the negotiations.

Secretary of State John Kerry and other administration officials said it was “reality-check time” for the peace process and warned that the U.S. commitment to the effort was not open-ended.

Israel argued that the Palestinians nearly derailed the negotiations by signing documents to become party to 15 United Nations conventions and protocols - treaties that seek a recognition of their sovereignty that would provide protections to women, children and civilians in war and combat.

The Palestinians counter that they signed the treaties because the Israelis broke their promise to release a fourth batch of Palestinian prisoners, whom Israel considers to be terrorists.

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