Palestinian Cabinet Minister Dr. Saeb Erekat, demanded Israel to add the names of the jailed legislator and Fateh leader Marwan Barghouthi, and Sameer Quntar, a Lebanese fighter who was captured by Israel on April 2, 1978, to the list of detainees the Palestinian Authority demands Israel to release.

The Israeli Radio interviewed Erekat on Tuesday morning. Erekat said that liberating Palestinian and Arab detainees is one of the important demands in order to hold the summit between Abbas and Sharon; the summit is most likely to take place November.

The Palestinian Authority demands Israel to release twenty detainees who were arrested before the Oslo agreement in 1993, in addition to receiving security control over cities in the West Bank, and the release of the Secretary General of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, Ahmad Saadat.

The P.A also rejects Israeli monitoring over the residents entering the Gaza Strip through the Rafah crossing.  

Erekat met over the last several days with Sharon’s advisor, Dov Weissglas, in order to prepare for the Abbas-Sharon summit, they agreed over phone, on Monday, to postpone the summit until next month, after Abbas returns from the United States.

Erekat told the Israeli radio that the P.A handed Israel a list of twenty names of Palestinian and Arab detainees who spent more than twenty years in Israeli detention facilities.

Israeli officials hinted that Israel might agree to releasing detainees who were arrested more than twenty years ago, but they rejected to release Quntar without receiving information regarding the Israeli pilot Ron Arad who has been missing in action since October 16, 1986 after his plan was shot down over Lebanon.

Also, Israel rejects to release the jailed Palestinian legislator Marwan Barghouthi, who was sentenced last year by an Israeli court to five consecutive life-terms. 

Earlier on Tuesday, Israeli Vice Prime Minister Shimon Peres, said that Israel did not reject all of the demands of Abbas, but “it is examining some of the demands” which were presented during the meetings between Weisglass and Erekat.

Peres stated that Israeli might release sick and aged detainees, yet, he reiterated Sharon’s statement calling on the P.A to fight Hamas “without any hesitation”.