Fatah says talks must be based on 1967 borders 21Feb12 February 21, 2012

Ma’an News Agency  -  20 February 2012

BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Fatah Central Committee members said Sunday that any direct peace negotiations with Israel must be based on 1967 borders, an end to settlement activity, and the release of prisoners in Israeli jails.

Members of the administrative body of Fatah met on Sunday in Ramallah in a meeting chaired by Mahmoud Abbas. The committee also discussed reconciliation with Hamas, the Doha agreement and upcoming meetings in Cairo to prepare for a new government and elections.

President Abbas is dedicated to reuniting the Palestinian homeland as it is a prerequisite to facing all future challenges, spokesman Nabil Abu Rudeinah said.

PLO officials held five rounds of exploratory talks with Israeli representatives in January, but insist they cannot progress to direct negotiations until Israel halts settlement building on occupied Palestinian land.

Fatah leader President Mahmoud Abbas and Hamas chief-in-exile Khalid Mashaal agreed that Abbas will head a joint government at a meeting in Doha in early February.

The accord also included agreements on releasing political prisoners, reforming the Palestinian National Council and activating the PLO for the next elections.

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