Palestinians on Sunday said Washington’s backing for Israeli refusal to halt Jewish settlement expansion had killed any hope of reviving peace negotiations soon.
Having invested considerable capital in seeking a solution for Palestinians and Israelis as part of a broader thrust to help stabilize the oil-rich Middle East, Obama faces an early setback in his presidency if the two sides refuse even to talk.
Netanyahu’s coalition, including pro-settler groups, does not believe Abbas is strong enough to deliver Israel security in any deal. Some analysts see Netanyahu’s cooperation with Obama’s demand for a resumption of talks on establishing a Palestinian state as intended mainly to ensure U.S. support against Iran.
Palestinians warn that popular frustration with the failure to produce a statehood deal could spill over into an upsurge in violence, even if few have appetite for a broad new uprising.