Likud Minister: No Deal for West Bank Settlement Freeze

Yossi Peled says heard firsthand during trip with Netanyahu to Europe that no agreement reached on matter.

Minister without Portfolio Yossi Peled (Likud) said Tuesday that Israel has not reached any deal for a West Bank settlement freeze, which U.S. President Barack Obama has demanded that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu implement.

Peled said he learned this during a visit to Europe with Netanyahu last week.

"I head that there are no agreements on a freeze in construction in Judea and Samaria," Peled said at a conference in Tel Aviv, referring to the West Bank.

The conference was held on the subject of "keeping Jerusalem and the Golan Heights."

The minister added: "I came back from the diplomatic tour with the prime minister in Berlin, where I heard firsthand that Jerusalem is the capital of Israel and Jews will live there, because this is how it needs to be."

On Monday, an aide to Mahmoud Abbas said the Palestinian President would reject any U.S. invitation to resume peace talks with Israel unless Washington persuades Israel to freeze settlement activity.

Nabil Shaath said only a full settlement freeze without exceptions or "loopholes" and an Israeli commitment to establishing a Palestinian state would be enough to bring Abbas back to the negotiating table.