JERUSALEM: In the Middle East, there is a peace process again, thanks to Prime Minister Netanyahu's new resolve. In a joint announcement, Israeli Foreign Minister David Levy and Palestinian Planning Minister Nabil Shaath said that bilateral committees will attempt to get the process moving again after a four-month interruption. In the wake of Friday's near-meltdown over the Jerusalem mayor's plans to allow a new settlement on disputed land, Benjamin Netanyahu's tough response put the talks back into motion. "The Prime Minister was very clear about saying said he would do his best to prevent the project," said TIME's Lisa Beyer in Jerusalem. "That really helped." TIME's Dean Fischer adds that the U.S. may have convinced the Israelis to commit to a freeze on settlements in exchange for the peace talks. "The U.S. has been very active behind the scenes from the very beginning," he said. Both sides have sent representatives to Washington in recent days.