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Israeli foreign minister: No Palestinian state by 2012

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

JERUSALEM -- Israel's foreign minister said there is "no chance" a Palestinian state will be established by 2012.

Avigdor Lieberman's comments Tuesday caused consternation among Palestinians and conflicts with a goal set out by international Mideast negotiators, who want a statehood deal by then.

Lieberman's remarks could also cloud the latest visit by Washington's Mideast envoy, who is mediating between the two sides. George Mitchell is due to hold another round of indirect talks with Israelis and Palestinians beginning Tuesday.

Palestinian Authority spokesman Ghassan Khatib said Lieberman's comments are a challenge to international efforts.

A spokesman for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu refused to comment.

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