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Israel, Palestinians to engage in sustained peace talks

By Tom Cohen, CNN
updated 12:38 PM EDT, Tue July 30, 2013
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Agreement on negotiations announced by Secretary of State John Kerry
  • Kerry said talks will be substantive with aim of final status deal in nine months

Washington (CNN) -- Secretary of State John Kerry said Tuesday that Israeli and Palestinian officials have agreed to "remain engaged in sustained, continuous and substantive negotiations" that will include "all core issues" toward achieving a final-status peace agreement in the Middle East conflict.

Speaking at the State Department, Kerry said Israeli and Palestinian negotiators will meet again "in the next two weeks" in either Israel or the West Bank to continue talks with the hopes of reaching a deal early next year.

"When somebody tells you that Israelis and Palestinians cannot find common ground or address the issues that divide them, don't believe them," Kerry said.

"While I understand the skepticism, I don't share it and I don't have time for it," he added.

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