Wednesday, June 27, 2007

News from Palestine

GAZA CITY-PALESTINE Sacked Palestinian Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh and Hamas are ready to immediately take part in inter-Palestinian talks as suggested by Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak at a four-way Mideast summit Monday, June 25. "Prime Minister Ismail Haniya favorably received the appeal launched by President Mubarak at Sharm el-Sheikh in favor of a revival of inter-Palestinian dialogue," his office said in a statement carried by Agence France-Presse (AFP). Haniyeh, who refuses President Mahmoud Abbas's dismissal of his government and appointment of an emergency cab, called on Friday, June15, for calm and self-restraint, proposing reconciliation talks with Fatah. Hosting Abbas, Israeli Premier Ehud Olmert and Jordanian King Abdullah in the Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh, Mubarak underlined Monday the urgent need for Palestinian dialogue. "We affirm the parallel need to end disagreements and close Palestinian ranks through dialogue," the Egyptian leader said. "The resumption of dialogue between all Palestinians and the achievement of a common position that speaks for them and their cause are an immediate need that can not be delayed." Sami Abu Zehri, a Hamas spokesman, said his group was ready to engage in any inter-Palestinian dialogue. "Snubbing Mubarak's call for dialogue means a prolonged crisis," he warned. "The ball is now in Abbas's court." President Abbas and his top aide have repeatedly ruled out any possibility of dialogue with Hamas, describing its takeover of Gaza Strip a coup against legitimacy. Hamas, which has since issued several calls for unconditional dialogue with Fatah, argues that it only acted preemptively to foil a plot by some Fatah lieutenants against it and its three-month national unity government. Olmert's Conditions

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