Palestinian sources said on Sunday that Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas is likely to appoint the head of the PLO political bureau Faroq Qadoumi as his deputy.

The sources reported that Abbas promised to appoint a deputy after meeting Qadoumi in Tunisia to discuss recently mounting tension between the two leaders.

Following the signing of the Oslo accords, Qadoumi refused to return to the Palestinian territories with the PLO leadership.

Abbas to appoint a successor

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said Friday that he plans to appoint a deputy after returning to the West Bank following a heart procedure.

‘This is something very important. We consider it seriously and in the near future it will be offered to the legislature and the Palestinian cabinet to discuss it and they will take the necessary decision,’ he said.

Israeli Prime Minsiter Ariel Sharon called Abbas on Friday, wished him a quick recovery from the surgery and reiterated an invitation to meet in Jerusalem on June 21. 

Abbas told Al-Arabiya television that the PA has discussed the issue of a possible successor; however he did not offer specific names of possible candidates.

‘I feel good,’ Abbas said a few hours after the operation in a Jordanian hospital.

‘Everything is okay, and my health is very good. I passed the routine checkup, I don’t even feel tired and can’t complain about a thing,’ he added.

Abbas was taken to a hospital in Amman, Jordan, on Wednesday complaining of fatigue, said Tayeb Abdel Rahim, a top Abbas aide. He underwent angioplasty, a procedure to clear out clogged coronary arteries.

Abbas has no known history of heart ailments, but Palestinian officials said he has high blood pressure. In the past, he has battled cancer and eye ailments.