Sneh. Initiated meeting
Photo: Gil Yohanan
Photo: AFP
Barghouti. Still considered a Fatah leader
Photo: AFP

Sneh secretly meets with Barghouti

Former deputy defense minister meets with former Tanzim leader at Hadarim prison. Defense Minister Barak briefed on meeting

Former Deputy Defense Minister Ephraim Sneh secretly met Monday with Marwan Barghouti, the former Tanzim commander in the West Bank, at the Hadarim Prison.


Barghouti is serving five life sentences for the murder of Israeli citizens.


The two met for about two hours and discussed issues relating to the situation in the Palestinian Authority. Defense Minister Ehud Barak was briefed on the meeting, which was initiated by Sneh.


Barghouti's wife, Fadwa, said in an interview with an Arab newspaper on Sunday that her husband would be released from jail as part of a deal that would include the release of kidnapped IDF soldier Gilad Shalit.


She added that the clashes between Fatah and Hamas caused her husband "great pain".


The London-based al-Hayat newspaper recently reported that Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas demanded during the Sharm el-Sheik summit that Prime Minister Ehud Olmert release Barghouti as part of the planned prisoner release.


According to reports from sources involved in the prisoner release talks, Abbas hopes that Barghouti's release would restore Fatah's popularity among the Palestinian public and strengthen his status in the West Bank.


Although he has been sentenced for life, Barghouti is still considered one of the Fatah's leaders, even inside jail. Only recently, after Hamas took over Gaza, he condemned the organization's "military coup" and expressed support of the new government established in Ramallah.


In a statement issued by Barghouti, he called on Abbas to fire the heads of the security organizations and appoint new people with the ability to make a reform in the organizations from a professional aspect. He also urged Ismail Haniyeh to resign as prime minister of the Hamas-led government.


פרסום ראשון: 07.09.07, 17:31
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