Last updated: 5 April, 2012

Israeli and Palestinian negotiators meet in Jordan

Jordan has nudged Israeli and Palestinian negotiators back to discussions on the peace process, a government official said on Thursday, adding that the two sides had met in Amman during the night.

“Israeli and Palestinian officials met last night in Amman for discussions,” the official told AFP, speaking on condition of anonymity.

He declined to give details.

Foreign Minister Nasser Judeh said Wednesday in an interview with state television that “Jordanian diplomacy has succeeded in breaking the deadlock as the two sides are having discussions now. They are discussions and not talks.”

“Jordan is following up on these discussions and their outcome. We are seeking to help the two sides go back to direct negotiations,” said Judeh.

Direct talks between Israel and the Palestinians have been on hold since September 2010, but Jordan and the peacemaking Quartet sponsored several rounds of meetings between envoys from each side in January.

Israeli and Palestinian officials said on Wednesday that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is to meet with Palestinian premier Salam Fayyad in coming weeks.

Israel says it wants to return to the talks without preconditions, but the Palestinians want clear parameters for discussions and an Israeli settlement freeze before they resume negotiations.