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US Denies Reports That Trump Is Pulling Back On Mideast Peace Efforts

The US State Department said that reports that President Trump is pulling back on trying to restart moribund Israeli-Palestinian peace talks is “just false.” Speaking during a press briefing, State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert, said she had spoken with people who accompanies president Trump’s son-in-law and senior advisor Jared Kushner and the president’s Middle East envoy Jason Greenblatt on their recent visit to the region. “The president has made Israeli-Palestinian peace one of his top priorities. You know that. We’ve talked about that.” At the same time she added that achieving what Trump has called “the ultimate deal” will not be easy and will take time and will not always be smooth. “Some meetings and conversations may be a little more difficult than other,” Nauert continued. That could be a veiled reference to reports of tensions between Kushner and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas over Abbas’ refusal to stop payments to the families of Palestinians killed or wounded in attacks on Israelis.