Abbas and Meretz's Gal-On to meet in Ramallah

PA president agrees to meeting with Meretz leader despite three-years of refusing to negotiate with Netanyahu.

Abbas (R370) (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)
Abbas (R370)
(photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)
Meretz party head MK Zehava Gal-On plans to hold a joint press conference with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah on Sunday.
They will jointly speak to the media after a meeting between Abbas and the Meretz faction.
A party spokeswoman would not divulge details of the message that the Meretz faction intends to relay to Abbas.
The IDF has yet to approve the visit.
Abbas agreed to meet with Gal-On, even though for over three years he has consistently refused to hold direct negotiations with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu toward the resolutions of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
An Israeli official said in response that such conversations were not a substitute for speaking with Netanyahu.
“He [Abbas] is not going to bridge the gaps between Israelis and Palestinians by speaking to the opposition,” the official said.
“His biggest failing is that he refuses to negotiate with the elected government of Israel,” he said.
“I am sure that Abu Mazen [Abbas] reads the polls and understands that she [Gal-On] is not about to become the leader of Israel,” the official said.
Sunday’s meeting will not serve the cause of peace or the Palestinians, he continued.
The only way to achieve peace and Palestinian statehood is through an agreement with the Israeli government, the official added.
To achieve such an agreement Abbas must negotiate with the prime minister.
Abbas has refused to hold direct negotiations with Netanyahu until Israel freezes settlement activity and Jewish building in east Jerusalem.
Jerusalem Post reporter Khaled Abu Toameh will be covering the press conference live on Twitter at 1 p.m., Israel Standard Time.