U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry arrived in Israel on Thursday for talks with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. It is his fourth visit to the country in as many months. Kerry was greeted warmly by Prime Minister Netanyahu:
John, it’s a pleasure to welcome you in Jerusalem. You’re an old personal friend and a long-standing friend of Israel, and that friendship was demonstrated in President Obama’s historic visit here in March. It was demonstrated yesterday in an extraordinary resolution by the U.S. Senate to stand with Israel against Iran’s nuclear program. I want to commend the House Foreign Affairs Committee for upgrading the sanctions so we’ll discuss Iran; we’ll discuss the terrible carnage and instability in Syria, but above all, what we want to do is to restart the peace talks with the Palestinians. You’ve been working at it a great deal. We’ve been working at it together. It’s something I want, it’s something you want. It’s something I hope the Palestinians want as well and we ought to be successful for a simple reason. When there’s a will, we’ll find a way. Thank you. So welcome.
Kerry thanked his host for the “seriousness” with which he is trying to advance the peace process and reaffirmed America’s commitment to Israel’s security. Israeli officials charged with advancing negotiations have emphasized Israel’s commitment to working with Kerry on the issue.
Palestinian Authority (PA) have indicated the opposite. PA officials are already leaking to a range of Arabic media that Kerry’s efforts in the region will be a failure.
[Photo: U.S. Embassy Tel Aviv / Flickr]