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Palestinians mull handing territory 'keys' back to Israel

Palestinian negotiators have warned they may pass responsiblity for their territory back to occupying power Israel if peace talks remain stalled, a senior Palestinian official said Sunday. The official said the Palestinians told US peace envoy Martin Indyk on Friday that unless Israel releases Palestinian prisoners as agreed and freezes settlement building, they could dismantle the Western-backed Palestinian Authority (PA) of president Mahmud Abbas.

Palestinians mull handing territory 'keys' back to Israel

Palestinian negotiators have warned they may pass responsiblity for their territory back to occupying power Israel if peace talks remain stalled, a senior Palestinian official said Sunday. The official said the Palestinians told US peace envoy Martin Indyk on Friday that unless Israel releases Palestinian prisoners as agreed and freezes settlement building, they could dismantle the Western-backed Palestinian Authority (PA) of president Mahmud Abbas.

Sixteen arrested after clashes at Jerusalem's Al-Aqsa

Israeli police arrested 16 Palestinians Sunday as they clashed with demonstrators at the Al-Aqsa mosque compound in Jerusalem, a sensitive holy site that is frequently the scene of tensions. "This morning, after the site was opened for visitors and tourists, the suspects threw rocks at the police, wounding two of them," police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld told AFP. After police dispersed the crowd with sound grenades the demonstrators took shelter in the Al-Aqsa mosque, which police are not allowed to enter, he said.

Israelis, Palestinians hold separate talks with US envoy

Israeli and Palestinian negotiators met separately Friday with US peace envoy Martin Indyk, a Palestinian source said, a day after five hours of three-way talks failed to bring agreement. Indyk first met chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erakat in the West Bank city of Jericho, but no details of their talks were given. Israeli officials did not respond to requests for information, but media reports said a new tripartite meeting could be held in the coming days.

Vandals leave anti-Arab grafitti on Israel mosque

Vandals left anti-Arab graffiti on a mosque in northern Israel overnight and damaged a door on the building, police said Friday. "There was an incident in which graffiti was written on a mosque in the city of Umm al-Faham," police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld told AFP, adding that the words "Arabs Out" were painted in Hebrew. "Such incidents aim to harm relations between Arabs and Jews," Israeli news site Ynet quoted the mosque's imam, Jamil Mahagna, as saying. "We demand the arrest of the criminals," he added.

Vandals leave anti-Arab grafitti on Israel mosque

Vandals left anti-Arab graffiti on a mosque in northern Israel overnight and damaged a door of the building, Israeli police said Friday. "There was an incident in which graffiti was written on a mosque in the city of Umm al-Faham," police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld told AFP, adding that the words "Arabs Out" were painted in Hebrew. "Such incidents aim to harm relations between Arabs and Jews," Israeli news site Ynet quoted the mosque's imam, Jamil Mahagna, as saying. "We demand the arrest of the criminals," he added.

Israelis, Palestinians to hold separate talks with US envoy

Israeli and Palestinian negotiators were to meet separately Friday with US peace envoy Martin Indyk, a Palestinian source said, a day after five hours of three-way talks failed to bring agreement. Indyk was due to hold talks with chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erakat in the West Bank city of Jericho from 0800 GMT, the source said, but he had no details of the US-Israeli meeting and Israeli officials did not respond to requests for information. Thursday's talks, in a Jerusalem hotel, were "very difficult", the source said. "The gap...is still wide."

'No breakthrough' in Israeli-Palestinian peace talks

Israeli and Palestinian negotiators meeting US envoy Martin Indyk to try to find a way to extend faltering peace talks have failed to reach agreement, a Palestinian source told AFP. The meeting began in the late afternoon on Thursday in a Jerusalem hotel but ended after five hours of "very difficult discussions", the source said. "The gap (between the parties) is still wide. There was no breakthrough," added the Palestinian source. Indyk is now expected to meet negotiators again on Friday, but he will talk to the Israeli and Palestinian sides separately.

Israeli, Palestinian negotiators seek to rescue troubled talks

JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Israeli and Palestinian negotiators met on Thursday in Jerusalem to seek a way to prevent troubled peace talks from collapsing ahead of an April 29 deadline. Two Israeli sources speaking on condition of anonymity confirmed that officials from both sides were meeting in Jerusalem, declining to provide further detail.

Israel, Palestinians hold peace talks with US envoy

Israeli and Palestinian negotiators met Thursday with US envoy Martin Indyk to try to find a way to extend faltering peace talks, with one Palestinian source calling the discussion "difficult". The meeting, which had been put off by a day, began in the late afternoon in a Jerusalem hotel, Palestinian sources said. The discussions are "very difficult", one source said.
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