A high-ranking member of Binyamin Netanyahu’s bureau issued a statement Wednesday expressing “extreme disappointment with US Secretary John Kerry for putting on Israel the blame” for the breakdown of Middle East peace talks.  “Kerry knows perfectly well that the Palestinians repeatedly interrupted the talks with refusals to carry on, said ‘no’ to dialogue with Israel, rejected his own framework proposal for the extension of talks,  and refused to address Israel as the Jewish national state.”  The Israeli official reminded the US Secretary that the Palestinians refused even to meet him, or even consider prolonging the negotiations.

By letting the Palestinians off the hook, Kerry encourages them to harden their rejectionist attitude and so undermine the chances of the talks getting anywhere, the official said. He added Israel was willing to continue peace efforts, but would also take its own unilateral steps in response to Palestinian unilateral actions. Wednesday, Netanyahu ordered government ministries to suspend cooperation with the Palestinian Authority and its heads.