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Tuesday Oct. 19, 2010 8:53 AM (EST+7)
Hamas adviser: Reconciliation must come before Israel talks

Read more: Ahmad Yousef, Hamas, peace process, negotiations, national reconciliation, Hamas-Fateh relations, Fateh-Hamas relations

RAMALLAH, October 19 (JMCC) - Palestinians must first come to a national reconciliation pact for their to be a meaningful peace process, says a close adviser to the Hamas prime minister.

Hamas deputy foreign minister Ahmad Yousef lays out his terms for a viable peace process in an interview with the JMCC's

bitterlemons: If you were to create a format for viable negotiations, what would that look like? Who would be present and in what format?

Yousef: We Palestinians can't start any negotiations until reaching reconciliation and unity. After that, we have to form a special consulting body--one from all Palestinians--because these negotiations will follow the constant principles of all Palestinians. No one faction from Palestinians can run these negotiations unilaterally; decision-making should be through the national or legislative council.

Also, there should be overarching headlines for these negotiations. Constant principles are non-negotiable, for one. This is the main framework of any talks with Israelis because Palestinian constant principles will endow the talks with more trust.

But the way Abu Mazen is dealing with these negotiations is not really correct and will not lead to the return of our rights. We don't know what Abu Mazen is going to get from the Israelis, but we also don't know what he is going to offer. Abu Mazen is a soldier going to war without a weapon.







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