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Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Abu Mazen - Haniyeh sulha watch - 3; Olmert fights back

For those who have forgotten, number 2 in this series was here and number 1 was here.

'Moderate' 'Palestinian President' Mahmoud Abbas Abu Mazen may have been in Jerusalem yesterday to romance Israeli Prime Minister Ehud K. Olmert, but his heart is still in Gaza with 'moderate' deposed 'Palestinian Prime Minister' Ismail Haniyeh. And Haniyeh has decided to strike up their romance again. Hamas was prepared to cede to Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas control of PA institutions and bases in the Gaza Strip, in return for a renewal of the unity government, reforms in the PLO [Palestinian Liberation Organization] and reinstating the Palestinian parliament, Israel Radio quoted a report from the pan Arab daily Asharq Alawsat, Wednesday.

The proposal was reportedly given by Hamas seniors to Abbas on Tuesday but the leadership of Hamas was reluctant to embrace it.

A Palestinian source was quoted as saying that if Hamas leaders would become supportive of the proposal, Abbas would accept it.

For those of you who think that Israeli Prime Minister Ehud K. Olmert is going to take this lying down, think again. Olmert is trying to compete with Haniyeh and has come up with an even better offer for Abu Mazen.

Palestinian militants exiled from the West Bank in 2002 - following a stand-off with the IDF in which gunmen took over the Church of the Nativity - may be allowed to return, senior sources from the Palestinian Authority said Tuesday.

According to the sources, future coordination of the issue was agreed upon during Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's meeting with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas earlier Tuesday.

Family members of the exiles and sources in the Palestinian Authority expressed hope that an agreement would soon be consolidated that would allow the militants to return to Bethlehem, as the exiles in Gaza – primarily Fatah-affiliated - have been complaining of harassment by Hamas since the group's June takeover of Gaza.

Exile Jihad Jaara told Ynet that, according to information he received from senior Palestinian officials, a solution for the exiles will be implemented beginning Ramadan, at the beginning of October.
For those of you who have forgotten what happened at the Church of the Nativity, there's background here. For more on Jihad Jaara, go here and here.

Abu Mazen is doing a great job of playing Hamas and Olmert off against each other, while continuing the terror and maintaining plausible deniability. His mentor would be pleased.

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