Kerry trying to salvage Mideast peace talks — State denies report on Pollard release

n13-iconReuters reports: U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry broke from a visit to Italy on Wednesday to try to salvage Israeli-Palestinian peace talks, even as Arab leaders declared they would never meet Israel’s core demand to be recognized as a Jewish state.

Kerry flew to Jordan to ask Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to commit to extending the negotiations, just days before Israel is supposed to release a final group of Palestinian prisoners as a confidence-building gesture.

Before it releases the prisoners, Israel wants to be assured Abbas won’t abandon the U.S.-brokered talks, which resumed last July after a three-year break. Having initially set next month as the target date for a peace accord, Kerry is now trying to get the sides to a agree a framework for further negotiations.

Israel’s Army Radio said Washington had offered to free Jonathan Pollard, a U.S. Navy analyst jailed for spying for Israel in the 1980s, if Israel went ahead with the prisoner release – keeping Abbas on the diplomatic track.

State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki denied the report, saying: “There are currently no plans to release Jonathan Pollard.” [Continue reading...]

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Comments

  1. When are these people going to get it through their mindsets, that releasing Pollard to appease Netanyahoo, is a non starter. He is a traitor to his country, he should have been shot.