While worried about President Barack Obama's ability to revive the peace process, Syrians value US willingness to talk to Damascus.
Saudi Arabia, a close US ally, has switched from a policy of isolation toward engagement. Some hope the warming could bolster US Middle East peace efforts.
Hamas cancels Fatah reconciliation talks in Egypt. At the UN, Libya gets a hearing today about allegations in the Goldstone report on the Gaza war.
Palestinian polls show Abbas gaining significant support in recent months over Hamas, which harshly criticized his willingness to meet the Israeli leader without a settlement freeze in place.
Women bear the brunt of conflict, so their input for peace is essential.