Palestinians will not start indirect talks with Israel unless the Israeli government cancels a decision to build 1,600 houses in occupied East Jerusalem, chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat said Thursday. "We want to hear from [United States envoy George Mitchell that Israel has cancelled the decision to build housing units before we start the negotiations," Erekat said.
Arab League chief Amr Moussa said on Wednesday that Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas had told him he would not enter indirect talks with Israel. The decision came after Israel declarced on Tuesday it would build 1,600 homes in occupied east Jerusalem. "The talks have already stopped," Moussa told Reuters.