Netanyahu postpones settlement committee meeting at US request


JERUSALEM (JTA) — In advance of a visit by President Donald Trump’s special envoy Jason Greenblatt, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has agreed to a U.S. request to postpone a meeting of a settlement planning committee.

Greenblatt is scheduled to arrive Tuesday in Israel to continue discussions toward restarting peace talks with the Palestinians, the Israeli media reported, citing unnamed White House officials.

Greenblatt, an Orthodox Jew, reportedly will then spend Sukkot in Israel with his family.

Netanyahu told a meeting of the Security Cabinet on Sunday evening that he would postpone the meeting scheduled for this week of the West Bank Civil Administration’s planning committee, which is set to approve hundreds of units of new housing construction in several settlements, following a request from the Trump administration.

Netanyahu met with Trump last week prior to the start of the United Nations General Assembly, which both leaders addressed. The Israeli leader also met with Greenblatt and Jared Kushner, a key White House adviser and Trump’s Jewish son-in-law.

The announcement of the planning committee’s agenda had been postponed until after the New York meetings to avoid friction, Haaretz reported.

Netanyahu also told the Security Cabinet about his meetings with President Abdel Fattah el-Sissi of Egypt and other world leaders on the sidelines of the General Assembly.

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