Israeli sources reported that the U.S Middle East Envoy, George Mitchell, will be holding a meeting on Thursday with Israeli Defense Minister, Ehud Barak, and a number of other Israeli officials. Mitchell arrived in the country on Wednesday night to start a new round of talks with Israeli officials, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, and a number of Palestinian officials before heading to Egypt.

A spokesperson for the Israeli Foreign Ministry stated that Mitchell will attempt to push talks forward between Israel and the Palestinians.

Israel still insists on its positions regarding settlement activities, borders, refugees and other essential issues that hinder any progress in the peace process.