U.S. peace envoy cancels trip to Mideast

A planned visit to Israel is postponed while the strategy gets tweaked

Published March 16, 2010 6:47PM (EDT)

The State Department says the Obama administration's special envoy for Mideast peace, George Mitchell, has canceled plans for talks this week with Israeli and Palestinian leaders.

State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley said Tuesday that Mitchell still intends to hold the talks at some point, but not before a meeting Friday in Moscow of top international diplomats to assess the Mideast peace process.

Mitchell is to join Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton at the Moscow session. He originally planned to depart Washington on Monday and hold talks in Israel and the West Bank on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Crowley says the change is not a signal that the U.S. is changing gears on the push to resume Israel-Palestinian peace talks.

By Robert Burns

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Israel Middle East