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Olmert and Abbas on Sunday
Photo: Amos Ben Gershom
Palestinian PM Haniyeh
Photo: AFP
Report: Abbas asked Olmert to let Haniyeh move freely
News agency quotes source in Palestinian president's office, saying Israel was asked to allow Palestinian prime minister to move freely between Gaza, West Bank. Report says Olmert considering request
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas asked Israel to let Palestinian Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh move freely between the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, the independent Palestinian news agency Sama reported Monday morning.

 

According to the report, which quoted a senior source in Abbas' office, the Palestinian president made the request during his meeting with Prime Minister Ehud Olmert on Sunday.

 

The source said that Olmert said he would consider the matter, but made it clear to Abbas that the issue would be discussed in the next meetings between the two leaders.

 

It was also reported that Olmert said Haniyeh must accept a series of conditions set by Israel, such as having Abbas accompany him as he passes through the different parts of the Palestinian Authority.

 

Israel prevents the movement of Palestinian ministers and parliament members from the Gaza Strip to the West Bank and vice versa, and therefore the Palestinian government meetings and the Legislative Council meetings are held via video conferencing.

 

Meanwhile, Palestinian Information Minister Dr Mustafa Barghouti said that the Olmert-Abbas meeting did not express the aspirations of the Israeli people, as Israel was not ready to put an end to the occupation.

 

Palestinian Deputy Prime Minister Azzam Al Ahmed, a senior Fatah member, said that the Abbas-Olmert meetings were not helpful and that he opposed them.

 

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