Arab states said to offer Israel overflights to halt settlement

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Arab states are reportedly offering overflight rights to Israeli aircraft as part of an agreement to halt settlement construction on occupied territory.

The deal would include ending a travel ban on Israeli citizens, reports The Washington Times, citing an unnamed US official ahead of an upcoming US-Palestinian-Israeli summit.

It says that US presidential envoy George Mitchell has received private assurances on overflight permission, from an undisclosed number of Gulf and African Arab states, if the Israeli Government freezes its controversial settlement programme.

Saudi Arabia has not agreed to the plan, the paper reports, short of a full Israeli-Palestinian peace deal.