U.S. Politics & Elections
Continuing a furious pace of shuttle diplomacy aimed at securing an elusive Israeli-Palestinian peace deal by spring, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry opened meetings Thursday in the Middle East on his ninth trip of the year to the region.
Concerned that a final status agreement may not be possible by the May target that the two sides accepted when they resumed talks in August, senior U.S. officials said Kerry was hoping for a framework accord that would contain the principles of a comprehensive pact, but not specific details. If such an outline could be achieved, the negotiations could be extended beyond the nine-month timeline originally set by Kerry, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, the officials said.