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Are peace talks imminent? Rumours fly in Israel

    Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (Photo: AP)
    Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (Photo: AP)

    Speculation is rife in the Israeli media that Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has agreed to meet Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to discuss the possibility of serious peace talks.

    According to Israeli television, Mr Abbas has threatened to take unilateral action at the United Nations if Mr Netanyahu does not make a serious proposal during the meeting.

    Maariv has reported that Mr Netanyahu is willing to release Palestinian prisoners jailed prior to the Oslo Accords and officially freeze settlement construction. This move would fit in with proposals from US Secretary of State John Kerry.

    Mr Kerry hopes that Mr Abbas, in return, will drop his precondition to only negotiate if Israel agrees on the 1967 borders as the basis for the creation of two states.

    Mr Kerry is expected to arrive in Israel on Thursday to continue pushing the peace talks. This will be his fifth visit since March.

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