PA Prime Minister Fayyad to meet with Netanyahu in Jerusalem

JERUSALEM (JWN and agencies)—In what will be the highest level meeting between Israelis and Palestinians since September 2010, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Salam Fayyad are to confer after Passover in Jerusalem.

Palestinian Authority officials said Fayyad would deliver to Netanyahu a long-awaited letter from PA President Mahmoud Abbas. Israel will respond with a letter of its own, officials in the Prime Minister’s Office said.

Abbas’s letter is expected to reiterate the PA’s demand for Israel to freeze construction in settlements and east Jerusalem and to recognize the 1949 armistice lines as the future borders of a Palestinian state.

Israel’s letter is expected to state its willingness to renew talks with the Palestinians with all core issues on the agenda without preconditions and that an eventual agreement must include Palestinian recognition of Israel as the nation-state of the Jewish people and effective security arrangements.

In a previous negotiating effort brokered by Jordan’s King Abdullah II, low-level Israeli and Palestinian officials met for five rounds of talks in Amman that ended abruptly on January 25.