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Shalom urges negotiators to be steadfast on settlements

Silvan Shalom, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's First Deputy, has called upon the Israeli negotiating delegation to remain steadfast and not to succumb to the pressure it may come under to extend the freeze on settlement construction.

On Thursday, Hebrew Radio quoted Shalom as reiterating that "it is not permissible for the Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, to overlook and ignore the principles of the Likud Party which has itself demanded the continuation of Israeli settlement in all Palestinian territories when the current freeze comes to an end on the 26th of this month."

Shalom also questioned the likelihood of a "way forward" for direct talks or "the achievement of any progress in light of the declared positions of the Palestinian side."

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