Peretz backs direct negotiations with Hamas

Former defense minister Amir Peretz said he would back direct negotiations with Hamas but that Egypt must in the meantime be allowed to mediate between the two sides. Speaking at a 'Cultural Shabbat' event in Beersheba, Peretz also voiced his support for freeing Tanzim leader Marwan Baghouti, saying that his release would prevent the next murder The former defense minister met the prisoner, but refused to divulge details about the meeting.