UN chief Ban calls for direct Netanyahu-Abbas talks

United Nations chief Ban Ki-moon (L) holds a press conference with Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas following a meeting at the Muqataa presidential compound in the West Bank city of Ramallah, on October 21, 2015UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said Friday that it was time for Israeli and Palestinian leaders to meet face-to-face to lower tensions over attacks in the West Bank and Jerusalem. “I strongly suggested and urged them to sit down together,” Ban told reporters after his return from the Middle East, where he met separately with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas. Ban’s visit to the region came amid sharp tensions over a series of violent attacks that have left several Israelis and Palestinians dead.

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