Israel-Palestinian talks to resume this month: Israel's negotiator Livni
JERUSALEM - Agence France-Presse
Israel's chief negotiator and Justice Minister Tzipi Livni (R) turns to chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erakat (L) as she speaks to the press with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry at the State Department in Washington on July 30. AFP photoThe next round of direct Israeli-Palestinian peace talks will take place in the region during the second week of August, Israel's negotiator Tzipi Livni, who is also justice minister, said Aug. 3.
"These discussions that began in Washington will resume during the second week of August and will take place in the region," Livni told the private Channel 10 television station.
She said the talks would alternate between Israel and the Palestinian territories, and that the first of the 104 Palestinian prisoners to be released would take place before the negotiations resume.
Asked if the agreement with Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erakat aiming to reach a peace deal within nine months would be respected, Livni was cautious.
"If after eight months we see that an agreement is near and more time is needed, we will continue. But if the discussions are not serious, we will know this within a month," she said.
On July 31, Livni said she was "encouraged" by the first round of direct peace talks with the Palestinians held in Washington at the start of this week after months of dogged U.S. diplomacy ended a three-year hiatus.
"I am encouraged... coming out of the first meeting," she said in an interview broadcast by army radio. "It was an event in which there was a kind of excitement and also hope."