'Olmert, Abbas holding secret talks'

'Al-Hayat': Final status talks focus on refugees, settlements, and Jerusalem.

jp.services1 (photo credit: )
(photo credit: )
Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas have been holding secret talks on a final status agreement on the critical issues between Israelis and Palestinians, Al-Hayat reported on Tuesday. The London-based newspaper quoted a senior government source as saying that the "secret channel was set up in a mutual agreement between the two leaders." The newspaper also reported that the two discussed the issue during their recent meeting in Jerusalem and decided that there was a need for deep discussions on the more "burning issues." The source reportedly said that the talks were focusing on the establishment of an independent Palestinian state, the Palestinian refugee issue, West Bank settlements and the future of Jerusalem. "There were talks on these issues but as yet there has been no breakthrough on any of them," the source was quoted as saying. The Prime Minister's Office has yet to respond to the report, a spokesperson told the Jerusalem Post.