Abbas in Mecca
Photo: AFP

Israel must accept new PA gov't, Abbas says

Palestinian president stresses that Palestinian presidency and PLO will lead any peace negotiations with Jewish state. 'The government is a Palestinian issue and an Arab issue and it is up to the Israelis to deal with the fait accompli,' he adds after arriving in Amman

Palestinian President Mahmud Abbas has said that Israel must accept the new national unity government being set up between rival factions, a news agency reported.


"This is a Palestinian issue and an Arab issue and it is up to the Israelis to deal with the fait accompli," Abbas told Petra news agency after his arrival in Amman on Sunday.


He also stressed that it would be the Palestinian presidency and the Palestine Liberation Organization which would lead any peace negotiations with Israel.


"This is clear to everyone, including Israel, the (Palestinian) government or other parties. It is not up to them to say 'yes' or 'no' if the talk is about official negotiations between us and the Israelis," he added.


Abbas made the remarks after briefing Jordanian Prime Minister Maaruf Bakhit on Thursday's agreement between his Fatah faction and the rival Hamas to set up a national unity government.

Abbas and Bakhit in Amman (Photo: AFP)


The accord makes no explicit reference to Israel or to respecting interim peace deals signed by the Palestine Liberation Organization, which Hamas never joined.


But Abbas, who flew in from Cairo, has repeatedly insisted that the new government must "respect" the peace deals signed by the PLO.


Abbas will meet King Abdullah II on Monday and on Tuesday he will hold talks in Amman with Russian President Vladimir Putin.


Earlier Sunday, sources at the Prime Minister's Office made it clear that in spite of reports in the Arab media, the three-way summit between Olmert, Abbas and US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice would be held as planned next Monday.


At the start of Sunday's cabinet meeting, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said that Israel was not accepting or rejecting the agreement signed in Mecca between Fatah and Hamas. 


"Israel is studying the details of the agreements and will then make its stance known," he said.


פרסום ראשון: 02.11.07, 20:54
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