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US Mideast envoy quits after attempt at peace deal

  • U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, right, speaks with Martin Indyk, U.S. special envoy for Palestinian-Israeli negotiations after meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Tel Aviv, Israel Novemebr 8, 2013.(AP Photo/Jason Reed)

WASHINGTON: U.S. special Mideast envoy Martin Indyk is resigning after nearly a year of unsuccessful efforts to forge an Israeli-Palestinian peace deal.

That's according to Obama administration officials. They say that Indyk will return to his previous job at The Brookings Institution think tank.

An announcement is expected later Friday. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the matter publicly. The State Department declined to comment.

Indyk is a former U.S. ambassador to Israel. He was appointed to the envoy post last July when Secretary of State John Kerry announced peace talks would resume with the goal of reaching a settlement within nine months.

But negotiations collapsed before the target date amid what Kerry and other officials said were negative steps taken by both sides.

The peace process is now in hiatus. It's not immediately clear if Indyk will be replaced. His deputy is Frank Lowenstein. He will assume the envoy position on an interim basis, the officials said.

 
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