'Embargo to be lifted if PA have no Hamas ties'

Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas has been informed by the US that an international aid embargo will be lifted as soon as he forms a new government without Hamas, aides to Abbas said Saturday. Abbas met earlier Saturday with the US consul general in Jerusalem, Jacob Walles at his West Bank headquarters. Walles told Abbas that the US supports his recent steps and that the foreign aid embargo on the Palestinian government will be lifted the moment the new government is formed. The international community had imposed the boycott after Hamas came to power in March 2006. The boycott continued even after Abbas's Fatah joined Hamas in a more moderate coalition.