France has decided to postpone its international peace conference aimed at resuming talks between Israel and the Palestinian Authority (PA), Channel 10 News reported on Tuesday.
According to the report, the PA envoy to France said that France informed the Palestinians that the peace conference, originally scheduled to take place later this month, has been postponed until January 2017.
The envoy stressed that the conference was postponed since there was not enough time to prepare it in such a way that ensures its success, and that the postponement was unrelated to Israel’s refusal to participate.
Israel has long opposed the French initiative, explaining that the only way to reach a peace agreement is through direct talks with the PA, which the PA refuses, choosing instead to impose preconditions on talks.
Last week, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu told French President Francois Hollande that he was willing to meet Abbas “directly, without preconditions”.
While the PA has accepted the French initiative, it has also continued to seek an alternative, namely in the form of a UN Security Council resolution condemning Israeli “settlements”.
Earlier this week it was reported that the PA would be sending a delegation to the United States which would seek to convince President Barack Obama not to veto an anti-Israel resolution at the Security Council.