The latest push towards progress in the Middle East peace process appears to have ended in failure, with back-to-back talks in Egypt failing to net any progress on any issues of import, and also failing to produce the direct talks sought by the US.
The call for direct talks appears to be a non-starter, with the Palestinian Authority rejecting the proposal out of hand, citing the lack of credibility and confidence with which Israel has carried out the indirect talks so far.
The US has been critical of Israel’s behavior in the indirect talks as well, with special ambassador George Mitchell complaining that Netanyahu did not appear to be taking them seriously and was refusing to even address any core issues.
Israel for its part has insisted that the process must move to direct talks “as quickly as possible.” Yet having sabotaged the indirect talks more than once with announcements of massive settlement expansions and refusing to address key issues, it seems that there is little prospect of advancing to the next stage in the talks.
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