UN chief urges Israel to halt settlement construction

Israel must halt settlement building and present detailed proposals for a border with a future Palestinian state, visiting UN chief Ban Ki-moon said Wednesday, as he tried to persuade the Palestinians to continue low-level meetings with Israel that the international community hopes will evolve into serious negotiations.

Israel must halt settlement building and present detailed proposals for a border with a future Palestinian state, visiting UN chief Ban Ki-moon said Wednesday, as he tried to persuade the Palestinians to continue low-level meetings with Israel that the international community hopes will evolve into serious negotiations.

Ban praised Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas for his leadership and publicly backed him on key issues, including the demand for a freeze of settlement building on occupied lands the Palestinians want for their state.

With Abbas by his side, the UN chief affirmed that “all Israeli settlements are contrary to international law and prejudice” the outcome of a final peace deal.

At the same time, Ban urged the Palestinian leader not to let the current peace efforts lose momentum. The dialogue on borders and security arrangements began last month at the urging of the Quartet of Mideast mediators — the U.S., UN, EU and Russia — which asked both sides to submit detailed proposals. The Quartet has said it wants a final deal by the end of the year.

Abbas has said the Jordanian-mediated exploratory meetings in Amman have run their course, but that he’ll decide after consultations with the Arab League next week whether to resume them. “I don’t like the word ’closing the door to negotiations.”’ Abbas said Wednesday. “Israel did not present encouraging offers in the Amman talks, but if it does, we will be ready (to resume talks).”

Just Posted

Alberta premier unhappy with Suzuki honorary degree but defends academic freedom

EDMONTON — Premier Rachel Notley says she does not agree with the… Continue reading

Sylvan Lake wants to create year-round tourist season

Public open house and workshops held May 10-12

Historical bylaws show a different Lacombe

Staff combed through records to find hundreds of outdated bylaws still on the books

Gravel companies facing fee increase

Red Deer County considering raising levy charged to gravel companies for road repairs

Excessive dog poop on Blackfalds ball diamonds frustrates town

Melting snow in Blackfalds uncovered ball diamonds full of dog poop, frustrating… Continue reading

WATCH: Red Deer students get active, healthy

Healthy Active Schools Symposium takes place in schools

Poll: Advocate readers support Trans Mountain pipeline expansion

Red Deer Advocate readers want the Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion to be… Continue reading

Celebrate all women this Mother’s Day in Central Alberta

A breakfast fundraiser is scheduled May 12 in Lacombe

Photo: Poplar Ridge Grade 6 class learn about newspapers

Red Deer Advocate editor Crystal Rhyno visited the school on Wednesday

‘The Heat’ doc examines gender barriers for top female chefs

TORONTO — In making a documentary about top female chefs, Toronto filmmaker… Continue reading

Hank Azaria willing to stop voicing Apu on ‘The Simpsons’

NEW YORK — Hank Azaria is ready to stop voicing Kwik-E-Mart owner… Continue reading

US stocks mostly fall in wobbly trading as costs, rates rise

NEW YORK — U.S. stocks are wobbling and trading mostly lower Wednesday… Continue reading

Most Read


Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month