Israel opposes peace meeting

JERUSALEM – Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told France’s foreign minister on Sunday that Israel remained opposed to a French initiative for an international conference to try to revive peace talks.

Palestinians welcomed the proposal but Israel is concerned that the conference that France seeks to hold in the autumn would try to dictate terms for a peace deal.

In public remarks to his cabinet after meeting France’s Jean-Marc Ayrault, Mr Netanyahu said: “I told him the only way to advance genuine peace between us and the Palestinians is through direct negotiations between us and them, without preconditions.”

Israel made the same argument in the formal response it gave last month. France hopes an international conference would set out a framework for peace negotiations, after US efforts to broker a two-state deal collapsed in April 2014.

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