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Mideast peace talks: Israeli, Palestinian teams come to Washington

July 29, 2013 12:00:00 AM PDT
The U.S. is hosting Mideast peace talks that begin Monday night. Israeli and Palestinian teams flew to Washington to end five years of diplomatic stalemate.

Secretary of State John Kerry appointed Martin Indyk, a former U.S. ambassador to Israel, to shepherd the talks.

Israeli and Palestinian negotiators agreed to meet after Israel's Cabinet authorized the release of 104 Palestinian prisoners, which sparked protests. People took to the streets in the West Bank and clashed with police when the prisoner release was announced.

Israeli officials call it a "tough decision" made for the good of the country. Those who lost loved ones in Palestinian attacks are outraged.

The release was part of an agreement brokered early this month by Kerry. Kerry spent much of his first six months as America's top diplomat in frenetic diplomacy trying to get the two sides to agree to resume peace talks that broke down in 2008.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.