Netanyahu-Fayyad Confab After Passover

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu is expected to hold a face-to-face meeting with PA Prime Minister Salam Fayyad about restarting talks.

Gabe Kahn,

Salam Fayyad
Salam Fayyad
Flash 90

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is expected to with Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Salam Fayyad after Passover.

Sources in the PMO say the meeting the two leaders will discuss the possibility of re-starting the long-moribund peace process.

The announcement came after a face-to-face meeting between the chief negotiators for the two sides, Yitzak Molho and Saeb Erekat.

The two reportedly discussed the text of a letter from PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas to Netanyahu outlining Ramallah's position on negotiations.

A delegation of PA officials are expected to deliver Abbas' letter during the intermediate days of the Passover holiday.

Nimr Hammad told Voice of Palestine Radio that Fayyad, PLO Secretary-General Yasser Abed Rabbo and Saeb Erekat will head the delegation.

According to Hammad, the letter will outline the PLO's position on the peace process and "remind the Israeli government of previous accords and international agreements."

Hammad added that Abbas would restate the PLO's position that it will not negotiate with Israel while it builds "on occupied land which would be a Palestinian state in a peace agreement."

Other PLO officials speaking to the Arab press have continued to demand Israel accept the indefensible pre-1967 borders and release all Arab terrorists from its prisons before talks resume.

Earlier on Wednesday, sources close to Netanyahu said the Prime Minister will reply to Abbas demanding he returns to negotiations without preconditions.

Netanyahu is also expected to demand Abbas recognize Israel as a Jewish state and agree to security arrangements in any peace agreement.

The official said Netanyahu would finalize his response after receiving Abbas' letter.

Critics say Netanyahu's government has failed to adapt to a new paradigm in which PLO officials pursue a unilateral track while forestalling bilateral talks with unacceptable preconditions.

In December 2011, PLO officials announced "a strategy based on continuous efforts along with the international community to secure full recognition and full United Nations membership, pursuing internal reconciliation, and keeping up the popular resistance."

On Tuesday, Abbas reaffirmed that position saying that a unilateral track at the United Nations “is our right and we will turn to the UN again."

The renewed contacts come after a failed series of five exploratory meetings between Molho and Erekat in Jordan in January.Netanyahu-