Israeli, Palestinian leaders to be invited to U.S. for peace talks

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Washington/Vineyard Haven (US), Aug.20 (ANI): World leaders are planning to invite Israeli and Palestinian officials to Washington in September to begin direct Middle East peace talks, a U.S. official confirmed Thursday.

An invitation from the United States, the European Union, Russia and the United Nations is to be announced as soon as Friday, nearly two years after the last round of talks broke off.he world leaders are suggesting early September for the first session of negotiations.

According to Los Angeles Times, details were still being worked out late Thursday, and though acceptance by both sides was expected, officials warned that nothing had been confirmed.

The U.S. has spent months on shuttle diplomacy - special envoy George J. Mitchell has been meeting extensively with Israeli and Palestinian officials since May - in an attempt to start indirect talks, with little discernible result.

Key negotiators signalled a breakthrough in the effort to begin negotiations this week, when Catherine Ashton, the European Union's top foreign policy official, announced in a letter to other EU officials that Abbas was on the brink of committing to talks.

The resumption of face-to-face meetings would be a measure of political success for his administration, even if the two sides didn't agree to discuss core issues that could relieve long-term hostilities and move the region toward a two-state solution. (ANI)

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