Hamas' Trigger

(Ha'aretz) Aluf Benn - Hamas leaders began saying they planned to release the Jericho prisoners. What finally sparked Israel's operational preparations was when the PA began releasing Islamic Jihad operatives from jails in the territories, and, at about the same time, Abbas said the PA should consider freeing the Jericho prisoners as well. Last Wednesday, the British and American consuls in Jerusalem sent a letter to Abbas informing him that they were canceling the 2002 agreement. The letter said: "The pending handover of governmental power to a political party that has repeatedly called for the release of the Jericho detainees also calls into question the political sustainability of the monitoring mission." They gave Abbas an ultimatum: Either implement the agreement in full, at once, or reach a different agreement with Israel. And should he fail to do either, "we will have to terminate our involvement with the Jericho monitoring mission and withdraw our monitors with immediate effect." Israel was informed that the British and American jailers would leave Jericho by March 15.

2006-03-14 00:00:00

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