Amid US efforts to broker a deal between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, a senior Israeli official has cast doubt on a possible agreement between the two sides.
There is "no chance of reaching a peace deal with the Palestinians in the near future," Israeli Deputy Prime Minister Moshe Yaalon told the Israeli Army Radio on Tuesday.
The latest rounds of direct Palestinian-Israeli talks have been put on hold after Tel Aviv refused to extend its partial freeze on the settlement projects in the occupied Palestinian territories.
On Monday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu put forward a proposal to the Palestinian side to recognize Israel as a "Jewish state" in return for a settlement freeze, which expired in September.
Palestinian Authority’s top negotiator Saeb Erekat, however, rejected the Israeli premier’s offer.
The Palestinians say they will not accept Israel as a "Jewish state," arguing that any such move would discriminate against Israel’s Arab minority and violate the rights of millions of Palestinian refugees scattered across the world.