Israel Rejects Qatari Mediation
Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni announced that Israel has rejected a Qatari mediation to call a long-term truce between the Palestinian Movement Hamas and Israel. Livni said she received the Qatari offer while being in Washington last week. She stressed that Hamas should firstly accept the Israeli and international conditions; to renounce violence, lay down its arms, recognize Israel, and admit prior agreements.
On the other hand, Hamas refused the decisions of the outgoing Palestinian Legislative Council made in its final session in Ramallah yesterday. Hamas, moreover, considered the session ’illegal’. Contrary to speculations, the Fatah-majority PLC did not enact an expansion of powers of the Palestinian Chairman Mahmud Abbas, Fatah leader. Hamas feared the parliament would empower in the last moment Abbas to disband the new parliament, in which Hamas constitutes majority. However, the outgoing PLC’s decisions restricted only to make some administrative nominations.