Mideast: Maariv, Kerry urges Netanyahu to freeze colonies

Hague, window for dialogue about to close

24 May, 09:49

    (ANSAmed) - TEL AVIV, MAY 24 - US Secretary of State John Kerry has asked Israeli Premier Benyamin Netanyahu whether he is ready to publicly announce a total freeze of planning and construction of colonies both in the West Bank and in more isolated settlements during a meeting Thursday in Jerusalem, Maariv reported on Friday. The newspaper was unable to report Netanyahu's response to Kerry's proposal.

    The US secretary of state has been holding bilateral talks with Israeli and Palestinian officials since yesterday, his fourth mission since February as part of US efforts to restart Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations. For his part British Foreign Secretary William Hague, who also visited Jerusalem on Thursday, said Israel had lost some of its support in Britain and Europe due to settlement activities.

    In an interview to Sky News published on Friday and cited by the Israeli press, Hague said the window of opportunity for a two-state solution was closing. 'We strongly disagree with settlements in occupied land', Hague told Sky News. 'Israel is a country we work with in many ways but we do disapprove of settlements'.(ANSAmed).

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