Urging Israeli-Palestinian talks, Obama backs down on settlements(Read article summary)
At the UN Tuesday, Obama appeared to drop his demand that Israel freeze settlement growth as a precondition to negotiations by calling on it to “restrain” activity instead.
President Barack Obama may be dropping – or at least softening – his administration’s demand that Israel freeze settlement growth in the West Bank as a precondition to starting peace negotiations with the Palestinians.
That would mark a stark change for the administration, which had pressed Israel to declare a full freeze to all settlement growth in the West Bank to jumpstart Israeli-Palestinian peace talks.
Officials from all three sides said after the meeting that Obama had abandoned the ultimatum he had given Israel, according to some news reports.