• Prime Minister Netanyahu said he wants to move “as speedily as possible” from the current U.S.-mediated proximity talks to direct talks. [AP]
• Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas will meet with President Obama at the White House in early June, three days after Netanyahu does. [Laura Rozen]
• Israel has alternately condemned and mocked the “Freedom Flotilla” now making its way toward Gaza, where it will attempt to breach the IDF’s blockade. The IDF has pledged to prevent the up to nine vessels from reaching Gaza. [NYT]
• Israel is set to announce its formula for compensating West Bank settlers hurt by the current six-month construction moratorium. [JPost]
• Syrian President Bashar Assad defended (to Charlie Rose) his backing of Hamas and Hezbollah, while also asserting that Iran supported informal Syrian-Israeli talks. [Haaretz]
Marc Tracy is a staff writer at The New Republic, and was previously a staff writer at Tablet. He tweets @marcatracy.