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Israelis, Palestinians agree to reach peace deal within nine months

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Israel and the Palestinians set themselves an ambitious goal to achieve a peace deal within nine months and agreed to meet again within two weeks after a first round of talks on Tuesday.

The United States, Russia, European Union and United Nations made a joint call on the two parties not to “undermine trust” according to AFP.

The diplomatic Quartet on the Middle East said it would support the two sides' declared “commitment to achieve a negotiated two-state solution within the agreed timeframe of nine months,” Reuters reported.

The group praised the “courageous decision” of Palestinian President Mahmud Abbas and Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to launch the talks which started in Washington on Monday.

Envoys from the Quartet, which was set up to promote a road map toward peace between Israel and the Palestinians, would meet “soon,” the statement said.

“While noting that much hard work lies ahead, the Quartet expresses its hope that renewed negotiations will be substantive and continuous and set a clear path towards a two-state solution, the end of conflict, and lasting peace and security for both Israelis and Palestinians,” said the statement.

(With AFP and Reuters)