Rafik Hariri Center Senior Fellow Richard LeBaron is interviewed by Deutsche Welle on whether the United States remains committed to the Israeli-Palestinian peace process despite stalled negotiations:
Deutsche Welle: The talks have been suspended for now – was this the final nail in the coffin for the already stalled talks?
Richard LeBaron: I don’t think so. It makes for better headlines to say the peace process is dead. Both sides have left open the possibility of returning to the table, certainly in the Israeli statement, they didn’t rule that out. And the Palestinians don’t have any interest in a permanent break in the negotiations either.
US President Barack Obama has hinted at a “pause” in negotiations…
There will have to be a break of some sort, but I don’t sense that they’ll stop working behind the scenes. This has been a very quiet approach that [US Secretary of State John] Kerry has taken with his team in the region, I don’t sense that they will stop talking to the two sides. But there will be a tactical pause here… But the US will have to stay engaged, and I don’t think we should be discouraged.