Israeli-Palestinian peace talks have not been moving forward and have now come to a standstill because Palestinian leadership announced a reconciliation agreement with Hamas, the largest-known terrorist group.
Shortly after the pact, Israel cancelled the US-brokered meeting that was scheduled for Wednesday with the Palestinians. The meeting had been scheduled to look for ways to extend the peace negotiations beyond the April 29th deadline.
Regarding efforts to negotiate a continuation of the diplomatic talks with the Palestinians beyond their deadline next Tuesday, Netanyahu said earlier in the day that every time the sides get close, Abbas adds new conditions “knowing that Israel cannot accept them.” (Jerusalem Post).
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas responded by saying that the unity pact did not contradict talks with Israel. Although this was not part of the pre-negotiation agreement, it definitely is a reason to call off negotiations because Hamas is a major threat to Israel.
Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman stated that Abbas needs to decide whether he wants to make peace, and with whom. “It is impossible to make peace both with Israel and Hamas,” he said. “Signing a unity agreement between Fatah and Hamas is signing the end of negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians.”
Song For Israel urges continued prayer for these peace negotiations as the deadline is this week.