JERUSALEM — The Israeli government (click here) announced Wednesday that it had given final approval for 1,500 new apartments in a particularly contentious Jewish settlement in East Jerusalem and moved forward on plans for a controversial park and tourism center here, prompting Palestinian accusations that it is not taking the Washington-brokered peace talks seriously. 
The construction approvals were an expected attempt to appease Israeli politicians and citizens outraged over the release of 26 Palestinian prisoners who were convicted of murdering Israelis. The men were released overnight under the agreement that began the talks this summer.
In recent days, some right-wing lawmakers and relatives of the prisoners’ victims denounced the idea that freeing criminals was an acceptable alternative to freezing settlement construction, as the Palestinian leadership originally demanded to enter the talks...
I take it the ambitions by Israel in regard to the settlements was not part of the peace talks with Palestine.
Published: October 31, 2013
JERUSALEM — The Palestinian negotiators (click here) engaged in peace talks with Israel offered their resignations on Thursday in protest over the continuing construction of Israeli settlements and what Palestinians say is a lack of strong American action on this issue, according to an official involved in the process.
But he and other officials said that the Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, was not likely to accept the resignations and that the talks would go on uninterrupted. The officials spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the matter publicly.
Asked about the resignation of the negotiators, Saeb Erekat and Muhammad Shtayyeh, a senior American official said, “We have been informed by the Palestinian side that they remain committed to the negotiations for the nine months agreed upon and that they fully intend to participate in the next round of negotiations.”...

Why is it I always get the feeling Israel's motto is: "See if you can stop us." There is such a thing as RELIABLE and TRUSTWORTHY and right now Israel is not looking like either.

11/01/2013 00:04
Five Israeli soldiers (click here) were lightly-to-moderately wounded and a Palestinian was reportedly killed late on Thursday night when Hamas operatives and IDF forces exchanged fire at the Gaza border....

Why am I not surprised? Perhaps Israel can contemplate their next agenda item and postpone aggressions while Secretary Kerry makes his way to a visit with them.


LAST UPDATED: 10/31/2013 23:11 
US Secretary of State John Kerry (click here) will visit next week for talks on the Israeli-Palestinian negotiations, even as senior Palestinian officials call for breaking off the talks due to Israel’s announcement of plans to build in Jerusalem and the settlement blocs.PLO officials on Thursday called to halt the peace talks with Israel in response to continued settlement construction and Israeli “raids and assassinations” in the West Bank. The officials called for an “overall national strategic revolution” that would see Palestinians asking international agencies and the UN Security Council to take measures against Israel....