Kerry to try to pull Israelis, Palestinians from 'precipice' in Middle East trip

Kerry to Meet with Netanyahu on Israel Violence
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Story highlights

  • Violence between Israelis and Palestinians shows no sign of slowing as Secretary of State John Kerry announces trip
  • Also Tuesday, Russia and the United States signed a memorandum regarding aerial operations over the skies of Syria

Washington (CNN)U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry will travel to Europe and the Middle East this week to discuss the recent violence in Israel, the West Bank and Gaza, as well as to consult with allies about the campaign against ISIS, the State Department said Tuesday.

In a briefing with reporters, State Department spokesman John Kirby declined to offer more specifics on the itinerary.
With violence between Israelis and Palestinians showing no sign of slowing down, Kerry has spoken recently with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas about the tension there, but the trip will allow him to speak with them in person.
    "I'll be meeting with Prime Minister Netanyahu either in Germany or in the region, and I will be meeting with President Abbas and meeting with [Jordanian] King Abdullah and others," Kerry said during remarks at the Climate and Clean Energy Forum in Washington Tuesday.
    "I look forward to these meetings as an opportunity to try to pull people back from a precipice and try to move down a road, because everybody understands that in the end, it requires a political solution, it requires two states living side-by-side in peace with two peoples appropriately honored with their countries, and with security," Kerry said.
    Also Tuesday, Russia and the United States signed a memorandum of understanding regarding aerial operations over the skies of Syria. On the heels of that agreement, Kerry is expected to meet with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, along with the foreign ministers of Turkey and Saudi Arabia, where operations against ISIS are likely to dominate.
    Kerry will also have discussions about the situation in Ukraine during the trip, State Department officials said.