WASHINGTON - Secretary of State John Kerry reached out to Israeli and Palestinian leaders in phone calls over the weekend, assuring them the Obama administration will continue to pursue a Mideast peace agreement while recognizing the individual concerns on both sides.
Kerry told Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of his and President Obama's commitment to support Israel's security and to pursue a lasting peace between Israelis and Palestinians. Netanyahu updated Kerry on his work to form a new government. They also discussed Iran and Syria, and pledged to work together closely.
In his conversation Sunday with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, Kerry said Obama "is very interested in the peace process and aware of the economic hardships of the Palestinian people," Abbas spokesman Nabel Abu Rdeneh said.