Mitchell: U.S. wants quick progress in peace talks
The Obama administration wants Middle East peace negotiations to resume soon and end quickly, American envoy George Mitchell told Israeli leaders on Tuesday. Mitchell, according to AFP, also played down growing tensions with Israel over the US demand to freeze settlement activities.
"We all share an obligation to create the conditions for the prompt resumption and early conclusion of negotiations," Mitchell said ahead of talks with Israeli President Shimon Peres. "We're now engaged in serious discussions with our Israeli and Palestinian and regional partners to support these efforts," said Mitchell. "We are working hard to achieve the objective of comprehensive peace in the Middle East ... including a Palestinian state, side by side in peace and security with the Jewish state of Israel," Mitchell told Peres, according to the AP.
The U.S. official added the American commitment to Israel's security is "unshakable," noting, "We come here to talk not as adversaries and in disagreement, but as friends in discussion."