News Brief

Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni has sent formal invitations to her counterparts from Egypt and Jordan for talks in Israel on the Arab peace initiative. The letters, announced Sunday, formalize the invitation Livni extended to Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmed Aboul Gheit and Jordanian Foreign Minister Abdelelah al-Khatib when she met with them in Cairo on May 10. The initiative offers Israel normal ties with all Arab states in return for a full withdrawal to pre-1967 boundaries, creation of a Palestinian state and a “just solution” for Palestinian refugees. It was presented to Israel in 2002, but Israel would not agree to the right of return of refugees. The plan was revived recently and unanimously approved in March at the Arab League summit in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Political turmoil in Israel after the release of a partial report of the Winograd probe about last summer s war in Lebanon delayed talks on the initiative.

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