Thu, September 16, 2010
World > Middle East > Middle East peace in talk

Clinton: "Netanyahu and Abbas mean business"

2010-09-15 09:00:32 GMT2010-09-15 17:00:32 (Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (L) and Israeli President Shimon Peres hold a joint press conference after their meeting at the Presidential Residence in Jerusalem, Sept. 15, 2010. (Xinhua/Yin Dongxun)

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (R) is welcomed by Israeli President Shimon Peres during their meeting at the Presidential Residence in Jerusalem, Sept. 15, 2010. (Xinhua/Yin Dongxun)

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (R) speaks with Israel's President Shimon Peres (L) upon her arrival for their meeting at the president's residence in Jerusalem September 15, 2010. (Xinhua/Reuters Photo)

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton speaks at a joint press conference with Israeli President Shimon Peres (not pictured) after their meeting at the Presidential Residence in Jerusalem, Sept. 15, 2010. (Xinhua/Yin Dongxun)

JERUSALEM, Sept. 15 (Xinhua) -- "Netanyahu is a leader who understands how important it is to move forward (in the peace process) and so is President Abbas," U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said in a joint press conference with Israeli President Shimon Peres Wednesday morning.

"I have sat with these two men and heard them talk. They mean business and are serious. The U.S. will stand by them through this process," Clinton said after the meeting with Peres at the Presidential Residence.

"I'm well aware of the obstacles that stand in the way of peace and the long history of distrust, but I see the future that can deliver the aspirations of both Israelis and Palestinians," she said.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas are slated to continue their second round of direct negotiations in Jerusalem later in the day after their talks in the Egyptian coastal resort of Sharm el-Sheikh on Tuesday.

Clinton said that while it is "always easier to be a pessimist, we're convinced that peace is both necessary and possible and that this is a moment of opportunity that must be seized."

"We believe the status quo is unsustainable, and that the only path to ensure Israel's future as a secure, democratic and Jewish state and Palestinian self-determination is through a negotiated two states solution," Clinton said.

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