Quartet aims to revive Mideast talks
BRUSSELS - Middle East negotiators will seek ways to restart the moribund Israeli-Palestinian peace process during a meeting tomorrow, the European Union said yesterday.
The meeting comes amid international pressure to reach a peace deal, fueled by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’s request two weeks ago that the United Nations recognize an independent Palestinian state. The gathering will include envoys from the United States, European Union, United Nations, and Russia, known as the Quartet.
The UN Security Council, the only body that can bestow full membership, is reviewing the Palestinian request. But Washington has pledged to veto any such resolution, saying it would worsen prospects for a peace accord.
Negotiations between the Palestinians and Israel have been on hold since 2008.
Mediators from the Quartet have met sporadically in a so-far fruitless effort to bring the sides together again.
The Quartet has proposed a resumption in negotiations with the goal of having a peace agreement by the end of 2012.
Israel has accepted the proposal with unspecified reservations while the Palestinians have said they will not return to talks until Israel freezes settlement activity and recognizes the pre-1967 frontier as a baseline for border talks.