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Posted On: 15 August 2013 02:24 pm
Updated On: 12 November 2020 02:13 pm

Fresh challenges ahead for Middle East Peace Process

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The first direct Israeli-Palestinian peace talks in three years open Wednesday in Jerusalem. Hussein Ibish, a senior fellow at the American Task Force on Palestine said: “Many Israelis are doing very well, but they are living in a bubble and have gone into a sense of denial about the conflict. They no longer see it or hear it, and they can even pretend it doesn’t exist. On the Palestinian side, their ability to influence the Israelis is really very limited. It’s not a good place for either side to be.” Talks were held at an undisclosed Jerusalem location. The meeting began hours after Israel freed 26 Palestinian prisoners. Parties agreed to meet again soon, an Israeli official said. No details were given on the subject matter of Wednesday’s talks. In 2000, the Israelis and Palestinians did appear close to a deal. But the talks collapsed and gave way to years of violence. Despite periodic efforts, the two sides haven’t been able to replicate the mood of the 1990s. “Before the peace talks began, Israel considered Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat and his cohorts to be terrorists. The idea of setting up a Palestinian proto-state was taboo,” says Makovsky a senior fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy. Countless rounds of negotiations did establish the outlines of what a deal would look like, says Robert Danin, a senior fellow at the Council of Foreign Relations and former State Department official. Israel has announced plans for more than 2,000 new settlement homes in recent days. The aim of the talks is to negotiate an end to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict based on two-state solution – a Palestinian state existing alongside Israel. Source:Qatar chronicle