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Netanyahu and Abbas. To talk again next month?
Photo: Amos Ben Gershom, GPO
Palestinians 'waiting for US guarantees'
PA sources say Washington will commit to agreement on Palestinian state's borders within three months, Ramallah to receive financial and diplomatic aid package. Direct talks with Israel likely to resume in early December
After Israel received a list of promises from the United States in exchange for agreeing to an additional settlement construction freeze, Palestinian sources said Monday morning that their leadership in Ramallah was awaiting a guarantees and aid package from Washington as well.

 

The Palestinian sources told the London-based Arabic-language al-Quds al-Arabi newspaper that the commitments would be given in exchange for a Palestinian agreement to renew direct peace talks with Israel.

 

The sources added that the commitments were not enough and that Palestinian Authority leaders plan to consult heads of Arab countries on the matter.

 

According to the sources, the United States is expected to give the Palestinians a list of commitments due to Israel's failure to include east Jerusalem in the second freeze agreement. They implied, however, that Washington would promise to intervene in the negotiations in a bid to reach a peace agreement within one year. The agreement itself is expected to be implemented in stages.

 

The sources added that the American commitments would include setting the Palestinian state's borders within three months and solving the refugee problem, including compensation through an international fund comprised of most of the region's countries (including Israel).

 

The sources also said that the American list of commitment would include financial and diplomatic aid in exchange for returning to the direct negotiations. They estimated that the talks would be resumed in early December.

 

Meanwhile, Israel is waiting for the decision of the Political-Security Cabinet, where Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has a majority of seven to six ministers for an additional three-month building freeze.

 

US President Barack Obama appears to view the new building moratorium as an established fact and has already commended Netanyahu for "making such a constructive gesture. It's not easy for him to do, but it signals he is serious."

 

Netanyahu changed his mind and agreed to an additional three-month construction freeze after the US offered Israel 20 advanced warplanes worth about $3 billion and a promise to veto any UN attempt to impose a peace agreement on Israel.

 

 

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