To celebrate the end of the settlement freeze several Israeli ministers including the Deputy Education minister visited Hebron on Monday to lay the foundation stone for a new nursery school in the heart of the Palestinian town.
As for peace talks, Israel’s hardline Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman is dismissive:
“I think that even the fact they came to the table, to the talks, in the last weeks was not a real good intention to aceive an agreement, but an American-imposed process on them.”
Currently in Paris in talks with President Nicolas Sarkozy the Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has not yet walked away from the talks as he said he would if the settlement freeze was not extended, but events may be catching up with him:
“We won’t have any quick reactions, we won’t say ‘yes’ or ‘no’, ‘we want’ or ‘don’t want’. We need to study all the results and consequences.”
The building on Arab lands continues apace, and tonight various Arab news organisations were already saying the talks were dead. And during the night, things got worse, with an Israeli air strike on Gaza that left three fatalities.