Jewish leader: We can't afford delay on peace process

The World Jewish Congress president has published an open letter calling on Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to re-open peace talks with Israel as a matter of urgency.

Ronald Lauder used the three-year anniversary of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's speech at Bar-Ilan University, in which he asked for Arab leaders to meet him for an open dialogue, to appeal for Abbas to forgo preconditions and return to the negotiating table.

He also condemned the Palestinian president for continuing to "decline the offer to begin direct talks with no preconditions".

He said: "Neither the Israelis, nor the Palestinians, nor any of us who seek peace in the region can afford further delay."

    Last updated: 11:38am, June 14 2012