Hamas hardliner Khaled Meshaal’s deposits in Cairo a list of tough, non-negotiable ultimatums for a ceasefire and Palestinian unity
Meshaal’s consent to finally travel to Cairo last week raised some hopes that he had come around to accepting a Palestinian unity government and discussing the release of kidnapped Israeli soldier Gilead Shalit. He soon dashed those hopes. Our sources learn he has left Cairo leaving behind a list of tough demands and headed for Yemen to lead a secret Hamas conference called to plot the next Palestinian-Israeli war.
These demands are disclosed here by our military sources:
- To procure Shalit’s release, Israeli must free 1,400 jailed Palestinians in three stages, including all Hamas, Fatah and other terrorists, such as Marwan Barghouti, who was convicted to six life sentences for murdering six Israelis. For the first batch of 400 women and minors, the Israeli soldier will be handed to Egypt. After the second batch of 500 (including the murderers) is released, Shalit’s parents and Israeli representatives will be allowed to see him.
- Israel must halt all military operations in the Gaza and West Bank, including preventive detentions.
- For his consent to a Palestinian unity government, the Hamas politburo chief wants a mechanism for opening the Palestinian Liberation Organization umbrella to Hamas membership and appointing him permanent chairman in place of Mahmoud Abbas.
Meshaal will thus acquire total control of the Palestinian movement and its resources worldwide.
- Hamas will retain treasury, interior and foreign affairs in the unity government.
- Within six months, Israel must withdraw to the June 4, 1967 borders and an independent Palestinian state established, else the Palestinians will wage a third intifada.
DEBKAfile’s military sources seriously question the wisdom of prime minister Ehud Olmert’s alacrity in accepting Mahmoud Abbas’ assurance of a missile ceasefire binding on all the terrorist groups. Olmert, foreign minister Tzipi Livni and defense minister Amir Peretz, who decided on acceptance, must have realized that the ceasefire on offer would not hold. First, because Meshaal instructed Hamas to hold out for its extension to the West Bank as well as the Gaza Strip; and, second, because Hamas transferred a large quantity of Qassam missiles to the Iran-sponsored Jihad Islami and the Fatah al Aqsa Brigades and other terrorist branches. They were directed to keep the missiles coming and so make a sham of the purported ceasefire declared for 06:00 hours Sunday, Nov. 26.
By precipitately pulling the Israeli units away from their successful counter-missile operations in N. Gaza, the Olmert government made way for the missile crews to return to their firing sites and keep up the barrage against Israeli civilian locations without pause. Thirteen were fired – most exploding in Sderot before 10:00 am Sunday. Their pretext? A number of suspected terrorists was detained in Hebron, West Bank, early Sunday. Olmert responded by urging “restraint” to give the Palestinians another chance.