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Mr. Netanyahu also quietly imposed a similar slowdown in east Jerusalem early this year after a run-in with the United States over Israeli policies in the area.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has expressed strong reservations about negotiating with Mr. Netanyahu, fearing the talks will be a waste of time and that his already poor public standing could suffer further damage.

On Wednesday, dozens of Abbas supporters stormed into a meeting hall in the West Bank town of Ramallah and blocked a group of opposition activists from holding a meeting to voice their objections to the peace talks. The men shouted slogans in favor of Mr. Abbas and his Fatah party.

The activists, from opposition factions inside the Palestine Liberation Organization, had planned to issue a statement urging Mr. Abbas not to speak to Israel until there is a complete halt to all settlement activity.

One of the organizers, independent lawmaker Mustafa Barghouti, claimed the mob were pro-Abbas security men disguised in civilian clothes. He called the attack a “stark violation of human rights.”

West Bank police spokesman Adnan Damiri denied the allegations and said no security forces were involved.

AP writer Mohammed Daraghmeh contributed reporting from Ramallah, West Bank.