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The Daily Star
THURSDAY, 24 APR 2014
11:42 AM Beirut time
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Palestinians ready to extend talks with Israel
Associated Press
Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi (L) sits next to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas during their meeting in the West Bank city of Ramallah December 18, 2013. REUTERS/Abbas Momani/Pool
Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi (L) sits next to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas during their meeting in the West Bank city of Ramallah December 18, 2013. REUTERS/Abbas Momani/Pool
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BEIT JALLA, West Bank: The chief Palestinian peace negotiator says the Palestinians are ready to extend the current talks with Israel beyond an April deadline - if there is a framework agreement in place.

The comments by Saeb Erekat mark the first time the Palestinians have endorsed the U.S. idea of seeking a preliminary - not final - peace deal.

Under U.S.-pressure, Israel and the Palestinians resumed negotiations last summer, agreeing to talk for nine months with the goal of a permanent peace agreement. With little progress so far, the Americans are now setting their sights on a preliminary deal.

Erekat said Wednesday that the framework would have to be a "detailed skeleton" addressing all core issues. If that is reached, he said talks could continue for several more months to complete the deal.

 
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