The State Department says it has asked about 40 nations and organizations to effectively "save the date" for a Mideast peace conference next week in Maryland.
Spokesman Sean McCormack says the U.S. has had informal contact with many of the invitees, so they could make their plans to attend.
U.S. ambassadors around the globe are expected to receive a detailed list of instructions today for issuing the invitations, with a script that runs more than 10 pages. The State Department is holding off on a formal announcement of the conference until the invitations go out.
The session is meant to commit Israel and the Palestinians to formal peace talks that are bolstered by international support. Israel's prime minister says he hopes a peace deal can be completed by the end of next year.