A Palestinian man rides in a mock train at a scene symbolizing the return to homes that Palestinians lost during the 1948 War.
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Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu poured cold water Sunday on the Middle East peace initiative advanced by France by questioning its impartiality, a claim swiftly denied by Paris.Speaking to ministers ahead of the weekly Cabinet meeting, Netanyahu relayed remarks he had made to French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault, who was visiting the region ahead of a May 30 international ministerial meeting.At the same time, Ayrault rejected Netanyahu's questioning of French impartiality, insisting that an Israeli-Palestinian peace process was imperative to prevent the spread of deadly Islamist violence.Netanyahu Sunday reiterated his opposition to indirect peace attempts, blaming the Palestinians for rejecting direct talks.Palestinian Foreign Minister Riad al-Malki told reporters after Ayrault met Abbas that unlike the Israelis, they welcomed the French initiative.
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