Washington steps-up effort to revive Israeli-Palestinian negotiations

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu welcomed at his residence in Jerusalem, US President Donald Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser, Jared Kushner, the US Mideast Envoy Jason Greenblatt and US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman, in what Washington said was the beginning of its official efforts to revive the long-stalled peace process between Israel and the Palestinians. Ahead of their meeting, which lasted some two and a half hours, Prime Minister Netanyahu declared that an opportunity presented itself to pursue goals of security, prosperity and peace, while praising the efforts by the Trump administration to bring an end to the decades old conflict.

״this is an opportunity to pursue our common goals of security prosperity and peace and Jared I welcome you here in that spirit I know of your efforts the president’s efforts and I look forward to working you to achieve these common goals,” said Netanyahu.

Israeli and US officials provided no information on the contents of the meeting, maintaining the circumspect profile they have established with regard to their peace-making efforts since President Trump took office, on January of this year. Following the meeting of the American delegation in Jerusalem, they traveled to Jerusalem where they were welcomed by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. Spokesman for the Palestinian leader, Nabil Abu Rudeineh, said following the meeting that all major issues at the heart of the conflict were discussed.

US officials called the trip by the American envoys part of an effort to keep the conversation going rather than the launching of a new phase in the peace process, while stressing that Jared Kushner and Jason Greenblatt, the president’s special representatives for international negotiations, are likely to return to the region often.