The United States has blocked a French proposal intended to help resume Israeli-Palestinian peace talks. Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas accused Washington of creating hurdles to the Middle East negotiations. Abbas said in the meeting arranged by French President Nicolas Sarkozy, Palestine would have asked the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to stop settlement construction in the West Bank. The Palestinians would in return agree to resume peace talks.
Palestine had earlier submitted a bid to the United Nations for full membership which was opposed by Washington. Previous attempts at dialogue between Tel Aviv and Ramallah broke down in October 2010 when Israel announced it would continue with building of its Jewish settlements.