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U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, left, meets with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov at the Russian ambassador's residence in Paris to discuss Ukraine on March 30, 2014. / Jacquelyn Martin, AP

PARIS (AP) - Secretary of State John Kerry is heading back to the Middle East for talks with Israeli and Palestinian leaders as peace talks hit a critical make-or-break point.

The State Department said Kerry will travel to Israel and the Palestinian territories on Monday amid a flurry of diplomatic activity by American mediators, who have been holding urgent talks with the two sides in hopes of salvaging the troubled negotiations and getting them to extend the talks beyond a current late-April deadline. With the parties unable to agree on the terms of a promised Israeli prisoner release, the negotiations risk collapse in the coming weeks.

Kerry is currently in Paris, where he met Sunday with Russia's foreign minister about the Ukraine crisis.



Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Read the original story: Kerry heads to Mideast with talks in jeopardy

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