Negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority could begin as early as next week, stated Knesset Minister Silvan Shalom. He made the comments at a news conference in Jericho on Thursday. "We hope talks will begin next week, possibly on Tuesday, but this hasn't been decided 100 percent. If there's no change at the last minute... I think there's a good chance talks can resume next week in Washington," Minister Shalom stated in the presence of officials in Jericho.
The new Jericho Agricultural Industrial Park is funded by the Japanese government, and the project was overseen by officials from the Palestinian Authority and the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan as well as Israel. Jericho was part of Israel until 1994 when the newly created Palestinian Authority took over jurisdiction.
Silvan Shalom serves as Minister for Regional Development, Minister for the Development of the Negev and Galilee and Minister of Energy and Water. On Wednesday he stated, "Israel wants peace, but not on the basis of the '67 borders and a building freeze in Judea and Samaria."