Israel’s peace negotiator with the Palestinians and his counterpart in the Palestinian Authority held a secret meeting in Jordan last week in an effort to restart peace talks, Ynetnews reports.
Minister Silvan Shalom, from Israel, and Saeb Erekat, from the Palestinian Authority, met last Thursday in Amman.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas were both aware of the meeting and approved it. The purpose of the meeting was to “break the ice” and restart peace talks.
“Last weekend, Netanyahu and Abbas spoke on the phone for the first time since the kidnapping and murder of three Israeli yeshiva students over a year ago,” notes Ynetnews. “This call eventually helped lead to the meeting.”
“Since the fourth Netanyahu government’s formation, Minister Shalom has been saying that if the Palestinians were serious and willing to hold a true negotiation without preconditions, they will find a real partner in Israel,” it adds.
Israel has been urged to take confidence-building measures towards the Palestinians.
Shalom reportedly said, “it did not make sense for Israel to take confidence-building measures on the one hand, while the Palestinians turn to the International Criminal Court at The Hague and to FIFA on the other hand to continue making unilateral moves against Israel.”