The Israeli television channel reported on Sunday night that the meeting between Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, and Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, in Jerusalem was tough but positive, and that Abbas told Olmert that the captured Israeli soldier will be freed in the coming week.The Israeli channel reported that significant progress was made during the meeting and that the indicators of this progress will be apparent in the coming week.
Meanwhile, Abu Mojahid, spokesperson of the Popular Resistance Committees, one of three resistance groups holding the Israeli corporal Gilad Shalit captive since June 2006, stated that the soldier will be freed if Israel fulfills the demands of the resistance by freeing Palestinian detainees, especially those who are serving high terms, children and women, in exchange of freeing Shalit.
The Israeli channel also said that Abbas and Olmert agreed to reactivate the Civil and Security Committees, and that the two leaders spent most of the meeting discussing the Mecca Agreement.
Moreover, Abbas demanded that the truce should also include the West bank, not only the Gaza Strip.
Mohammad Dahlan, one of the senior security advisors of Abbas, attended the Abbas-Olmert meting, and said that the two leaders also discussed the issue of border crossings, especially Rafah and Karni.
Dr. Sa'eb Erikat and Rafiq Al Husseini also attended the meeting, Dahlan said.
He added that Abbas and Olmert agreed that a truce should be solidified, and that Israel should stop its invasions, assassinations and arrests while the Palestinian resistance should stop the firing of homemade shells into Israel.
Abbas and Olmert agreed to hold further meetings, but set no specified date.
Erekat also said that Abbas explained the Arab peace initiative to Olmert, and demanded that Israel refrains from any measures that would affect the final status solution, especially settlement construction and expansion, the Annexation Wall, and the digging near the Al Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem.
An Israeli online daily reported that Olmert told Abbas that the truce in Gaza would not be extended to the West Bank until Israel is convinced that this truce is fully implemented in the Gaza Strip.
On his part, Olmert said that Israel would not recognize the Palestinian Unity Government unless it abides by the demands of the Quartet; recognizing Israel, renouncing violence, and accepting the signed peace deals.
He also said that unless this happens, Israel would not have contact with Fateh ministers serving the unity government.
“Olmert told Abbas not to appoint Fateh officials who are in contact with Israel, in order to prevent the contacts from being terminated”, the report said.