Notice how every time someone discusses giving more in exchange for peace with Palestinazis a new war becomes ever so closer?
PA to free hundreds of Hamas detainees
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has decided to release hundreds of Hamas detainees who are being held without trial in various PA-controlled prisons in the West Bank, Palestinian officials here said on Monday.
The decision is aimed at paving the way for the resumption of reconciliation talks between Abbas's Fatah faction and Hamas, the officials said.
They added that Abbas's move was also aimed at sending a message to the US and Israel to the effect that the PA leadership is deeply disappointed by Washington's failure to force the Israeli government to stop construction in the settlements and accept the two-state solution unconditionally.
Azzam al-Ahmed, a top Fatah legislator closely associated with Abbas, said that Abbas has instructed the PA security forces in the West Bank to start releasing Hamas detainees in the coming days.
He said the instructions also related to those detainees who were arrested for security offences, on condition that they don't pose a threat to public order and security.
Ahmed, who served as a member of the Fatah delegation during the previous sessions of reconciliation talks with Hamas, confirmed that the decision was linked to Abbas's desire to patch up his differences with Hamas.
The Egyptian-sponsored reconciliation talks were called off due to Hamas's insistence that Abbas's security forces stop arresting its supporters in the West Bank and release some 700 detainees who are being held without trial.
PA security officials said the massive crackdown on Hamas supporters was part of a pre-emptive measure aimed at foiling the Islamic movement's attempt to topple the PA regime in the West Bank
Fatah and Hamas negotiators have been invited to another round of talks in the Egyptian capital on July 7.
A PA official here told The Jerusalem Post that the Egyptians were planning to impose an agreement on the two parties if they did not end their differences in the next few weeks.
"General Omar Suleiman is very serious about forcing the two sides to sign an agreement over the formation of a Palestinian unity government," the official said, referring to Egypt's General Intelligence Chief, who has been personally supervising the talks.
Ibrahim Abu al-Naja, a senior Fatah representative from the Gaza Strip who has also been involved in the reconciliation talks with Hamas, revealed that, on the instructions of Abbas, more than 20 Hamas detainees had already been released over the weekend.
"Fatah is prepared to do many things for the sake of achieving national unity," he said. "The divisions have seriously harmed the higher interests of our people."