US envoy falls short on West Bank mission

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The Independent Online

The White House's Mideast envoy failed to secure Palestinian agreement to go to direct talks with Israel yesterday, despite mounting pressure from the US to begin negotiations in September.

America has been calling for a resumption of face-to-face negotiations, which broke down in 2008. On Monday, officials said American envoy, George Mitchell, was pressing for direct talks to start by 1 September. But after a three-hour meeting with Palestinian President, Mahmoud Abbas, Mr Mitchell left empty-handed and said he would return to the region soon.