Kerry talks with Israeli leaders, Abbas in first weekend on job

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Kerry also assured Palestinians that the United States was aware of the current financial crisis and that President Obama "cares about the peace process and supports efforts related to it."

Kerry phoned Peres on Saturday and Netanyahu on Sunday. In both conversations, Kerry commended Netanyahu's decision to transfer 400 million new sheqel to the Palestinian Authority to help relieve the financial crisis, according to the Jerusalem Post. Kerry also “underscored his personal commitment and that of President Obama to support Israel’s security and to pursue a lasting peace between Israelis and Palestinians," according to a statement from the State Department.

Read-outs of the phone call also indicate that Kerry and the Israeli leaders discussed the potential threats of Iran and Syria and Netanyahu's coalition-building efforts following the recent Israeli election.

Kerry has said he plans to travel to the Middle East early into his tenure as secretary of State, and that he hopes to jump-start renewed peace negotiations.

"We need to try to find a way forward, and I happen to believe that there is a way forward," he said in his confirmation hearing. "But I also believe that if we can't be successful that the door, or window, or whatever you want to call it, to the possibility of a two-state solution, could shut on everybody, and that would be disastrous in my judgment."


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