Kerry returns to United States after meeting with Netanyahu and Abbas

Kerry meets with Abbas and Netanyahu Tuesday, returns to USA on Wednesday, states “we may be reaching a pivotal point now where both sides have important decisions to make for the future…”

Kerry in Israel December (Reuters)

Kerry in Israel (Reuters)

United States Secretary of State John Kerry met with Prime Minister Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas during his visit to Israel Tuesday, talks focused on renewal of peace talks and negotiations amidst ongoing Palestinian incitement and terror attacks.

During Kerry’s meeting with Netanyahu in Jerusalem, Netanyahu clarified that peace and resumption of negotiations with the Palestinians would only be possible when calm is restored. Netanyahu also clarified that there would be no settlement freeze.

Kerry condemned Palestinian violence, incitement and terror attacks, expressing “outrage at this kind of violence, to condemn this violence, and to make it clear that Israel not only has a right to defend itself, but has an obligation to do so,” adding that the “United States will continue to stand with Israel in support of your desire to live in peace and stability and without that violence.”

Following his meet with the Prime Minister, Kerry traveled to Ramallah to meet with Abbas, there meeting centered on what the United States “can do to try to help contribute to calm and to restore people’s confidence in the ability of a two-state solution to still be viable, to be achieved at some point.”

Upon his return to the United States, Kerry stated in a press conference in Boston, “Over these past months we have been encouraging the parties to take affirmative steps to reduce tensions and demonstrate a genuine commitment to a two-state solution. I think we may be reaching a pivotal point now where both sides have important decisions to make for the future and we obviously hope that they make choices that will advance the prospects for lasting peace.”