Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is urging Palestinian
President Mahmoud Abbas to meet with him immediately to restart peace
Mr. Netanyahu told his Cabinet Sunday he is ready for talks with the
Palestinian leader on political issues and economic cooperation. He
says Israel has the ability to attract many investors to develop the
Mr. Abbas's government in the West Bank has said it will not restart
peace talks unless Israel stops all settlement activities in the
The Palestinian and Israeli leaders have not met since Mr. Netanyahu took office in March.
Mr. Abbas said Sunday Israel and the Palestinians both must fulfill
their obligations under the internationally-backed 2003 "road map"
peace plan. It calls on Israel to freeze settlement activity and urges
Palestinians to crack down on militants who seek the Jewish state's
The Obama administration is pressuring Israel to stop all construction
in settlements built on West Bank land the Palestinians claim for a
future state. Israel says it will not build new settlements, but will
allow construction in existing settlements to accommodate population
Mr. Netanyahu said Sunday Israel has eased security restrictions in the
West Bank in recent weeks to help the Palestinian economy. He says
Israel will expand such measures only if it secures cooperation from
Mr. Abbas's government.