US says Israeli-Palestinian talks to start Monday

WASHINGTON — Israeli and Palestinian negotiators will resume long-stalled direct peace talks on Monday following six months of frenetic shuttle diplomacy by Secretary of State John Kerry.

The State Department announced Sunday that the two sides had accepted invitations from Kerry to come to Washington “to formally resume direct final status negotiations.” In a statement, department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said the initial meetings would begin Monday evening and continue Tuesday.

She said Kerry had called both Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Sunday and said they agreed that the talks would “serve as an opportunity to develop a procedural work plan for how the parties can proceed with the negotiations in the coming months.”

“Both leaders have demonstrated a willingness to make difficult decisions that have been instrumental in getting to this point,” Kerry said in the statement. “We are grateful for their leadership.”

Kerry had announced on July 19 in Amman, Jordan, that negotiators from the two sides would be coming to Washington in a “week or so” after having agreed on a basis for resuming negotiations after a five-year break. However, he warned that the agreement was still being formalized.

Sunday’s carefully worded statement offered no details of the framework for the resumption of the talks that broke down five years ago, although both sides’ positions are well known.

The statement was released shortly after the Israeli Cabinet agreed to release 104 long-term Palestinian prisoners convicted of deadly attacks, meeting a longstanding Palestinian demand.

More in Local News

Mill Creek councilman no longer lives in city, panel finds

The Canvassing Board determined Sean Kelly is not eligible to vote there.

A Democrat and ex-Republican team up to end two-party politics

Brian Baird and Chris Vance unveil a new organization called Washington Independents.

The beavers weren’t happy, either, about Mill Creek flooding

A tree fell on their dam, sending a rush of water into a neighborhood near Jackson High School.

Two windsurfers rescued from Port Susan near Kayak Point

The men had failed to return to shore during Sunday’s windstorm.

Herald photos of the week

A weekly collection of The Herald’s best images by staff photographers and… Continue reading

Stranger offered candy to student walking home from school

The Granite Falls School District is warning families about… Continue reading

Coming together as family

Special-needs students and teachers at the Transition Center cooked up a Thanksgiving feast.

Lynnwood’s property tax promise to homeowners sort of true

They were told consolidation of fire departments would save, but new rates likely will be more.

Woman who died in 5-car crash identified

A car driven by Susan E. Sill rear-ended another vehicle Wednesday on Smokey Point Boulevard.

Most Read