Bibi: Palestinians delaying peace talks

Mr Netanyahu said Israel has made every effort to resume talks

Mr Netanyahu said Israel has made every effort to resume talks

Israel’s Prime Minister has blamed the Palestinians for stalling peace negotiations by refusing to engage in direct talks.

Benjamin Netanyahu called on the Palestinians to begin direct peace discussions “without delay and without preconditions”. He made the comments at a speech for fundraisers.

He added: “The Palestinians, regrettably, have made every effort not to resume the peace talks", while Israel, he insisted, "has made every effort to resume the peace talks”.

The United States has attempted to resume indirect discussions but Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas has rejected direct talks without a full freeze on construction in the settlements.

Mr Netanyahu’s comments follow the approval of new building plans in east Jerusalem, which will mean the destruction of 22 Palestinian homes.

In July he will meet President Obama in Washington DC to explore “additional steps” for the region.

Last updated: 5:47pm, June 22 2010