Kerry to report on peace progress to Quartet

WASHINGTON (JTA) — U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry will report to the Quartet of entities guiding the Middle East peace process on progress in Israeli-Palestinian talks.

The meeting will take place Saturday in Munich, according to a statement Friday by Catherine Ashton, the European Union High Representative for Foreign and Security Policy, who will chair the meeting.

“This meeting takes place in a moment when difficult and bold decisions need to be made,” said Ashton.

Top State Department officials have said in recent days that the United States will soon unveil a framework agreement that would be aimed at a final status peace agreement by the end of this year.

Kerry wants international backing for some of the more sensitive proposals, including an end to claim on refugees and sharing Jerusalem as a capital for two states, and is also seeking funding for implementing security mechanisms along the West Bank-Jordan border.

“The dividends of peace for Israelis and Palestinians are enormous,” Ashton said. “I hope that together we can help those decisions to become a reality to continue working towards a negotiated peace agreement, setting an end to the conflict and fulfilling the legitimate aspirations of both parties.”

The Quartet is comprised of the United States, the European Union, Russia and the United Nations.

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