Middle East

U.S., Europe Press for Middle East Talks

Shortly after Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas formally requested full United Nations membership, international powers unveiled a plan designed to delay the controversial vote and resume Israeli-Palestinian peace talks. The U.S., Russia, and European nations set a timeline for negotiations between the two parties, culminating in a deal at the end of 2012, but the plan was vague and lacked any incentives to push the two parties back to the negotiating table. Earlier, Abbas spoke to thunderous applause before the assembly. “It is a moment of truth, and my people are waiting to hear the answer of the world,” said Abbas. To Abbas' claim that Palestinians were armed only with their “hopes and dreams,” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu fired back, “Hopes, dreams — and 10,000 missiles and Grad rockets supplied by Iran.”