Sources say that US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will soon announce resumption of talks between Israel and Palestinians, after more than 20 months after diplomacies broke off. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and leader of the Palestinian Authority have agreed to a one-year term limit for the talks, and will meet in Washington in early September, according to the sources. Palestinian leaders are understood to want certain guarantees from the US, while Israel has agreed to talk with no preconditions. It is unclear what the talks may centre around, although the matter of the Gaza strip (which is controlled by the more militant Hamas) may not be touched upon. President Barack Obama will be meeting with the two leaders in Washington, in what will be viewed as a small victory for his administration. Read more: the NY Times and al-Jazeera.
The filming of The Beach permanently damaged the ecosystem on the Thai island it was located on.