The National  Memo Logo

Smart. Sharp. Funny. Fearless.

Monday, December 09, 2019 {{ new Date().getDay() }}

WASHINGTON (AFP) – Secretary of State John Kerry will meet Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas in London on Monday to discuss the direct talks between Israel and the Palestinians, U.S. officials said Thursday.

Kerry, who has met with Abbas numerous times over the past five months, will next see him at the end of a September 6-9 trip that will also take him to Lithuania and France, State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said.

In London, Kerry will discuss with Abbas “a range of issues including the ongoing, direct, final status negotiations between the Israelis and Palestinians,” Psaki told reporters.

Direct talks between Israel and the Palestinians resumed on July 29, after Kerry shuttled between Jerusalem, the West Bank and Amman for several months seeking to end a three-year stalemate in the negotiations.

The two sides have since met three times in August and in early September in Jerusalem.

In line with Kerry’s desire to keep the details of the negotiations secret in order to give the process a chance to work, little has leaked about the talks.

But Palestinian officials have complained about the lack of direct U.S. involvement, even though Kerry has appointed veteran diplomat Martin Indyk to act as the U.S. go-between to the talks.

Ahead of the first bilateral meetings in Jerusalem on August 14, Israel announced plans to build more than 2,000 Jewish settler homes on Palestinian territory, in a move that angered Palestinian negotiators.

One senior Palestinian official said Wednesday that the talks have so far proved “futile.”

“Until now there has been no progress,” the Palestine Liberation Organization’s Yasser Abed Rabbo told Voice of Palestine radio, after several weeks of meetings between Israeli and Palestinian negotiators.

“Despite our decision to take part in talks, we’re now seeing what we expected — that there is little hope for their progress, in fact that hope is non-existent and negotiations are futile,” he said.

Kerry will also meet with Arab League officials in Paris to update them on the state of the talks, Psaki said.

Another State Department official, who asked not to be named, said Kerry would also meet soon with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu but no date had yet been set.

In Vilnius, Kerry will meet with senior Lithuanian government officials to discuss a range of issues, including regional cooperation, and energy diversification.

He will also meet with the EU foreign ministers in informal session, at which the crisis in Syria is likely to top the agenda. Kerry will travel to France on Saturday before heading to London on Monday.

Advertising

Start your day with National Memo Newsletter

Know first.

The opinions that matter. Delivered to your inbox every morning

Donald Trump

Image via Twitter

A year after former President Donald Trump left the White House and Joe Biden was sworn in as president of the United States, Trump continues to have considerable influence in the Republican Party. Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, a former Trump critic turned Trump sycophant, recently told Fox News that having a “working relationship” with Trump must be a litmus test for anyone in a GOP leadership role in Congress. But an NBC News poll, conducted in January 14-18, 2022, finds that many Republican voters identify as Republicans first and Trump supporters second.

Analyzing that poll in the New York Times on January 21, reporters Leah Askarinam and Blake Hounshell, explain, “Buried in a new survey published today is a fascinating nugget that suggests the Republican Party may not be as devoted to Trump as we’ve long assumed. Roughly every month for the last several years, pollsters for NBC News have asked: ‘Do you consider yourself to be more of a supporter of Donald Trump or more of a supporter of the Republican Party?’ Over most of that time, Republicans have replied that they saw themselves as Trump supporters first.”

Keep reading... Show less

Ivanka Trump, right

Image via @Huffington Post

As House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s select committee on the January 6, 2021 insurrection moves along, it is examining Ivanka Trump’s actions that day — especially the former White House senior adviser urging her father, then- President Donald Trump, to call off his supporters when the U.S. Capitol Building was under attack. This week, Ivanka Trump’s importance to the committee is examined in a column by liberal Washington Post opinion writer Greg Sargent and an article by blogger Marcy Wheeler.

Sargent notes that the committee’s “new focus on Ivanka Trump” shows that it “is developing an unexpectedly comprehensive picture of how inextricably linked the violence was to a genuine plot to thwart a legitimately elected government from taking power.”

Keep reading... Show less
x
{{ post.roar_specific_data.api_data.analytics }}