Ma'an News Agency (Analysis)
September 21, 2010 - 12:00am

NEW YORK (Ma’an) -- All Israelis are watching negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians attentively hoping for success, Israeli President Shimon Peres said Monday in New York.

At a news conference on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly, Peres addressed questions from the Palestinian press as to whether he was taking a leadership role in the ongoing talks, and whether he had intervened in the process.

"I am here for that purpose ... all of us support these negotiations," he said following a visit with President Mahmoud Abbas at Manhattan's Millennium Hotel the same day.

Discussions on core issues of the peace talks will continue at several levels in New York, despite the absence of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, US officials affirmed.

In New York, US State Department spokesman Phillip Crowley said Secretary of State Hillary Clinton would meet Israeli Minister of Defense Ehud Barack, who US officials said would represent Netanyahu.

Clinton was also set to meet EU foreign policy chief Cathrine Ashton.

Leaders of 155 countries including US President Barack Obama in addition to dozens of foreign ministers are taking part in the meetings of the General Assembly.

Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu, Sudanese President Omar Al-Bashir, Libyan President Muammar Ghaddafi and Saudi King Abdullah Ibn Abdul-Aziz opted not to attend, sending other officials on their behalf.


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