STALEMATE

Little Progress in Middle East Talks

They’re not getting any closer. Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, wrapped up their second round of Middle East peace talks on Thursday with little progress. Abbas and Netanyahu spent over four hours in direct negotiations, yet the two leaders have still failed to come to an agreement on the topic of Israeli settlement construction. Netanyahu said that the moratorium on new settlements, which expires Sept. 30, would not be extended. “It takes time, all of this is complicated,” said Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. “But where we sit now, it would be useful for some extension, it would be extremely useful.” She added: “From what I've seen, it could go on a very fast track to either an agreement or to agreement on certain things, and I hope that it continues.” Aides to the two leaders will continue negotiations next week, but no date has been set for more direct talks between Abbas and Netanyahu.