Israeli Foreign Minister, Sylvan Shalom said that if Hamas participates in the upcoming Palestinian legislative elections Israel and the international community will not recognize the results of these elections.

In an interview with the Israel Radio on Saturday morning, Shalom said that Israel informed the Palestinian Authority that “it will not allow Hamas to participate in the elections”.

“If they do, Israel and the international community will not recognize these elections”, he added.

Shalom claimed that the resistance factions are still smuggling arms and ammunition through Rafah, and that Israel “hopes that the Egyptian will act against it”.

Shalom charged that Egypt is not doing enough to prevent the flow of weapons into the Palestinian territories.

“The Palestinians have lots of weapons and ammunition”, Shalom said, “The real problem is that the P.A is not really willing to fight Hamas”.

In spite that Israel confined the late Palestinian President, Yasser Arafat, in his Ramallah compound until he died, Shalom said that when he [Arafat] decided to stop the shootings, “we enjoyed three years of calm”.

Commenting on the Israeli unilateral pullout from the Gaza Strip and northern West Bank areas, Shalom said that Israel will not carry any other unilateral withdrawals without any receiving anything in return.

Also, Shalom said that both the Palestinian Authority and Israel should conduct all needed procedures for the Abbas-Sharon summit in order to achieve the needed outcome. 

The Israeli Prime Minister, Ariel Sharon, will hold a meeting on Sunday, with vice prime minister, Shimon Peres, and the Israeli Minister of Defense, Shaul Mofaz, to discuss the reopening of the Rafah Border Crossing between Gaza and Egypt.

During the meeting, Israel will discuss the role of European observers at the Rafah crossing, and the issue transferring goods through the Kerem Shalom crossing, which is a crossing point between Gaza, Egypt and Israel. 

Israel will also decide on Sunday’s meeting whether it will accommodate the movement through Nitzana and Kerem Shalom crossings.