Goodwill moves likely upon PM’s return

Gestures may include releasing prisoners, security transfer to PA.

By
July 9, 2010 04:36
1 minute read.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks t

Netanyahu New York 311. (photo credit: Associated Press)

The Defense Ministry is drafting a comprehensive list of confidence-building measures that it anticipates it will be asked to implement after Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu returns to Israel on Friday from his meeting with US President Barack Obama, The Jerusalem Post has learned.

It has not been decided if the measures will be taken only following an announcement on the opening of direct negotiations with the Palestinian Authority, which Netanyahu has said will likely begin in the coming weeks, or will be initiated sooner, as part of an Israeli and American effort to get the PA to sit down at the negotiating table.

Gestures may include releasing prisoners, lifting roadblocks, security transfer to PA

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The gestures under consideration include the release of Palestinian prisoners from Israeli jails, the lifting of IDF roadblocks in the West Bank and the transfer of security authority over Palestinian towns in the West Bank to PA security forces.

On Monday, Defense Minister Ehud Barak met with PA Prime Minister Salam Fayyad in Jerusalem, in the first high-level meeting between top officials from the sides in about a year.

A senior defense official said that Fayyad urged Barak to move forward with the confidence-building measures and to include an Israeli commitment not to deport Hamas legislators from Jerusalem.

Four Hamas-affiliated Palestinian Legislative Council members currently face expulsion from Jerusalem. One of them, Muhammad Abu Tir, is in police custody for refusing to leave the city in late June, shortly after he was released from jail after serving close to four years.


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