Israel's President Shimon Peres speaks during a press conference in Oslo on May 13, 2014
Israel's President Shimon Peres speaks during a press conference in Oslo on May 13, 2014 © Larsen, Hakon Mosvold - Scanpix Norway/AFP
Israel's President Shimon Peres speaks during a press conference in Oslo on May 13, 2014
AFP
Last updated: May 13, 2014

Peres hopes for renewed talks with Palestinians

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Israeli Prident Shimon Peres said Tuesday that he hoped for a return to talks with Palestinians which were suspended in April.

"The negotiations with the Palestinians, led by (US) Secretary (of State John) Kerry, are currently paused but they are not finished," he told a press conference in Oslo.

"Neither side has a better alternative than peace based upon two states for two peoples. I hope that the negotiations will be re-started," he said.

Kerry relaunched Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations in July 2013, and they came to an inconclusive end on April 29 this year.

Prior to the April deadline Israel announced it was suspending talks following an agreement between the ruling Palestinian Liberation Organisation (PLO) and the Islamic movement Hamas, which holds power in Gaza and does not recognise the Israeli state.

President Peres made the upbeat comments during the first state visit by an Israeli president to Norway.

The first secret peace talks between Palestinian and Israeli negotiators also took place in the Scandinavian country, culminating in the now defunct Oslo Accords in 1993.

The agreement -- which led to seven years of stop-start peace talks -- was followed in 1994 by the awarding of the Nobel Peace Prize to Shimon Peres, then foreign minister, along with Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and PLO leader Yasser Arafat.

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