Abbas Meets Islamic Jihad Head in Syria

[ Jerusalem Post] Khaled Abu Toameh - PA leader Mahmoud Abbas met in Damascus Monday with the head of Islamic Jihad, Ramadan Abdullah Shalah, and discussed efforts to achieve "national unity" in the Palestinian territories. Islamic Jihad has refused to sign on to the cease-fire agreement reached between Hamas and Israel more than two weeks ago. Sources close to Islamic Jihad said the group's leaders had urged Abbas to suspend the peace talks with Israel. The sources said Abbas had agreed to release Islamic Jihad prisoners held in PA jails in the West Bank and to stop pursuing members of the group. Earlier, Abbas briefed leaders of other radical Palestinian factions, including the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine and the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine. Hamas leader Mahmoud Zahar on Monday denied reports his movement was prepared to cede control over security installations in Gaza in return for the formation of a Hamas-Fatah unity government. Zahar said Hamas would not hand back the security headquarters to Abbas' forces unless they reformed themselves and stopped cooperating with Israel.

2008-07-08 01:00:00

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