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Obama urges Abbas, Netanyahu to resume Mideast peace talks

RIA Novosti

22:04 22/09/2009 NEW YORK, September 22 (RIA Novosti) - U.S. President Barack Obama on Tuesday called for an early resumption of Middle East peace talks.

Speaking before a meeting in New York with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, Obama said they should do more to make peace talks possible.

"Simply put, it is past time to talk about starting negotiations," Obama said on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly session. "It is time to move forward."

Neither the Israeli nor the Palestinian leader spoke but following Obama's comments they did shake hands, before the three retired for joint discussions. Each had met privately with Obama before their appearance in front of the cameras.

Obama said his point man on the Middle East, George Mitchell, would meet with Israeli and Palestinian negotiators again next week.


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