American Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has appointed retired Marine General James Jones as her envoy for the Middle East. The new post signals more direct American intervention in negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority (PA) that are to resume in two weeks.
Jones will focus on security issues, Secretary Rice said. "He will work with Israelis and Palestinians on the full range of issues and he will work to strengthen security for both sides." Jones' position includes working with Jordan and Egypt, while military Lt. Gen. Keith Dayton remains the American security coordinator for the Palestinian Authority (PA).
However, Jones will not be specifically responsible for Israel and the PA's implementing the Road Map.