Barbara Slavin, senior fellow for the South Asia Center, writes for Al-Monitor on Middle East peace negotiations:

Chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat on March 18 called the latest meeting between Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and US President Barack Obama “candid, difficult and long” and said that Abbas had given Obama a map showing that Israel has built more than 10,000 new housing units in Jewish settlements since talks resumed last year.

Erekat, in a rare public appearance in Washington, said Israel's settlement construction amounts to “four times the natural growth of New York City,” but that the Palestinians remain committed to the talks and appreciate the efforts of Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry.

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