The Jordanian government announced today that Foreign Minister Judeh will host two meetings on January 3, one with Israeli and Palestinian negotiators and the Quartet envoys, and a second meeting between the Israeli and Palestinian representatives. We welcome and support this positive development. I applaud the efforts of the King and Foreign Minister Judeh to bring the parties together and encourage them to approach these meetings constructively. I have been in close contact with Foreign Minister Judeh and with Special Envoy David Hale.
When I met with the other Quartet principals on September 23rd we put forward a framework for resuming direct negotiations between the parties. We knew that progress toward this goal would not be easy so it is essential that both sides take advantage of this opportunity.
We are hopeful that this direct exchange can help move us forward on the pathway proposed by the Quartet. As the President and I have said before, the need for a lasting peace is more urgent than ever. The status quo is not sustainable and the parties must act boldly to advance the cause of peace.