Egyptian Intelligence Chief Omar Suleiman is scheduled to arrive in the Gaza Strip next week, to officially invite Palestinian factions to a series of talks in Cairo on calm.

Palestinian Authority has expressed optimism that the visit would bring about understanding on the need for calm in the region in order to carry out successful parliamentary elections in January 2006.

The period of calm is set to end in December 2005.

Significant progress has been made between Palestinian factions over the past few days regarding future talks in Egypt to renew calm.

The Egyptian security delegation currently in the Gaza Strip since the eve of disengagement has continued efforts with the factions in bid to set out basic principles for a future summit in Cairo aimed at discussing the extension of the ceasefire, or calm.

Palestinian factions agreed to maintain a nine-month period of calm in their talks in Cairo last March.