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Israeli, Palestinian Business Leaders Seek to Break Impasse

A new peace initiative will be presented at the World Economic Forum in Jordan this weekend, May 24-26.
Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad (L) speaks next to Israel's President Shimon Peres during a session at the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, January 26, 2012.             REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann (SWITZERLAND  - Tags: POLITICS BUSINESS)   - RTR2WWBB

Amid US Secretary of State John Kerry's latest shuttle to the region, a group of Palestinian and Israeli businessmen are set to present what they call a joint appeal to push their governments out of the current political rut and get a step closer toward realizing a two-state solution. The document, aptly titled "Breaking the Impasse," has been kept secret for some time, but the people involved in its masterminding include Palestinian philanthropist and industrialist Munib al-Masri and high-level Israeli businessmen such as high-tech entrepreneur Yossi Vardi.

Many of the Israeli figures involved include former government officials, army generals and military figures who played roles in previous negotiations, and “people who understand that a peace agreement would boost chances for business and job opportunities,” according to Elias Zananiri, a political adviser and public relations consultant closely familiar with the initiative.

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