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Israel's Yaalon praises US, Kerry's 'efforts' on peace

Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon (L) attends the weekly cabinet meeting at his office in Jerusalem on March 23, 2014Israeli Defence Minister Moshe Yaalon praised Washington for its role in attempting to mediate a peace agreement with the Palestinians in a Sunday meeting with the US military’s top officer. “This is a critical week for the Israeli-Palestinian issue and we appreciate the efforts made by US Secretary of State John Kerry, as well as the commitment and contribution of President (Barack) Obama towards this endeavour,” Yaalon was quoted by his office as telling General Martin Dempsey. The three-day visit of the chairman of the US joint chiefs of staff comes after Yaalon upset Washington with remarks criticising its foreign policy and prompting the State Department to demand an apology. It also comes as the United States is struggling to find a formula that would enable Israel and the Palestinians to continue faltering peace talks beyond an April 29 deadline.

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