JERUSALEM, Dec. 4 (Xinhua) -- U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry landed late Wednesday evening in Israel, a spokesperson for the U.S. embassy in Israel told Xinhua.
Kerry visits the region in an attempt to push forward negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians, which appear to be stuck, mainly due to Israel's ongoing construction in the West Bank and east Jerusalem settlements.
Israeli officials, on their part, said the Palestinians are " looking for reasons" to avoid the talks and drag their feet throughout the nine months allocated for the talks and Netanyahu demands that the Palestinian president acknowledge Israel as a Jewish state and work to end the incitement against Israel.
Netanyahu and Kerry will meet on Thursday morning and give some statements afterward. Kerry will also meet with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah later in the day and perhaps again with Netanyahu on Thursday evening.
Chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat told Palestinian Radio Wednesday afternoon that the Mideast talks are faltering.
"Kerry must work to save the talks, to stop the deterioration of the talks caused by Israel's continuing settlement activity," he said.
Other than the peace process, Kerry will also discuss the Iranian nuclear program and interim agreement signed between the P5+1 countries and Iran in Geneva, which Netanyahu called a " historic mistake."
The U.S. strong bond with Israel was strained recently over the countries' disagreement on how to approach the diplomatic discourse with Iran, with officials of both nations exchanging attacks on the issue.
The United States pushed to reach for an interim agreement and give diplomacy a chance, while Netanyahu and his government campaigned worldwide to keep sanctions in tact and get more guarantees from Iran that it would not push for nuclear weapons.
RAMALLAH, Dec. 4 (Xinhua) -- U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry started on Wednesday a new round of visit in the region, including Israel and the Palestinian territories, in a bid to push forward the stalled peace talks between those two sides, said a senior Palestinian official.
Chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat told Voice of Palestine Radio that the Palestinians hope Kerry will come to help rescue the talks and block the ongoing deterioration due to Israel 's intensive increase of settlement building in the Palestinian territories. Full story