An Israeli political source stated that, during his latest visit to the region, U.S. Secretary of State, John Kerry, told Palestinian President, Mahmoud Abbas, that the United States would cut all economic aid to the P.A. should the Palestinians insist on what he called “preconditions” for the resumption of direct peace talks.Israeli Walla News Agency quoted the unnamed source stating that Kerry threatened Abbas during their Ramallah meeting, when he visited the region late last month, that the White House would cut all aid, and would hold Abbas responsible for the failure of peace talks.

Kerry claimed that Abbas insists on “preconditions” such as the release of Palestinian political prisoners, freezing Israeli settlement activities, and the Israeli withdrawal to the 1967 borders.

Just before leaving the region, Kerry told reporters “he is glad for achieving some progress”, and promised to continue close talks to ensure the resumption of negotiations.

The Israeli source told Walla that Israel is not willing to “continue to pay the price to convince Abbas to resume direct talks”, and claimed that Israel even offered to agree to a time frame for talks on vital issues such as borders, the refugees, Jerusalem and security arrangements.

However, he also reiterated Israel’s demand that the Palestinian must recognize Israel as a “Jewish State”, and added that Abbas rejected the “offer”.

Palestinian sources said that the Israeli statements are just test strips that carry no significance, as the Palestinian Authority cannot resume direct talks as long as Israeli continues its violations and its illegal settlement activities.