Thursday, March 22, 2007

EU holds talks with new PA coalition government.

From, 21/3/07 ....

The European Union held its first formal talks with the new Palestinian Authority coalition government.

The E.U. envoy to the Middle East, Marc Otte, met Wednesday with P.A. Finance Minister Salam Fayyad, an independent who the Hamas-led Cabinet hopes will help lift a Western embargo on direct aid.

Earlier this week, a U.S. official held talks with Fayyad, breaking with its policy of shunning the entire P.A. government until it recognizes Israel's right to exist and renounces terrorism. The United Nations was expected to follow suit later Thursday with a meeting between its regional envoy, Alvaro de Soto, and Fayyad. Those talks would mark, effectively, Fayyad's acceptance by all members of the Quartet of foreign mediators in Israeli-Palestinian peace efforts. The fourth partner, Russia, never agreed to boycott the Hamas-led Palestinian Authority.

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