Abbas tries reviving truce with Israel

Factions give Israel 48 hours to respond to offer, which includes W. Bank.

May 26, 2007 12:30
1 minute read.


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Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas was trying to revive a truce with Israel it was announced after a meeting between Palestinian factions late Friday. Under his plan, Gaza terrorists would halt rocket fire at Israel for a month to allow for negotiations on a more comprehensive cease-fire that would include the West Bank. The factions asked Israel to respond to the proposal within 48 hours. Abbas has been in talks with the separate militant factions since Tuesday. "We discussed halting rockets in return for Israel not to conduct air, sea and land attacks, and then to include the West Bank in the truce," Ayman Taha, a Hamas spokesman, said early Saturday. "There are no Israeli guarantees, which is a problem, because Israel can attack the West Bank during that period, and we don't want a one-sided truce." Israel's response came around midday Saturday. In quick succession, Israeli aircraft fired missiles at five Hamas installations across Gaza. In Gaza City, missiles hit one of the group's main compounds, killing four people and wounding four, one seriously. Another person was wounded in an air attack in southern Gaza. Haniyeh stayed away from public prayers on Friday. He issued a statement after a second IAF strike saying the air strikes in Gaza are a sign of Israel's "political and security crisis." "This campaign will fail because of the steadfastness of the Palestinian people," Haniyeh said. In the West Bank, Israeli troops arrested Cabinet Minister without portfolio Wasfi Kabaha, confiscating his computer and many of his documents. The arrest came two days after a sweep in which more than 30 Hamas politicians, legislators and local council members were arrested, including the education minister. In related news, the Palestinian Preventative Security Service announced Saturday that it had foiled a network of collaborators with Israel in the West Bank. According to the announcement the suspects had given information to Israeli security services and had helped draft other collaborators.

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