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Abbas, Olmert to meet on March 11: report

The meeting comes after Israeli-Palestinian-American trilateral summit and Mecca accords.

world Updated: Mar 08, 2007 18:43 IST

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert are likely to meet Sunday, a local daily reported Wednesday.

The meeting will take place in Jerusalem Sunday, Ramallah-based al-Ayyam daily quoted unidentified Palestinian sources as saying.

Meanwhile, chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat said a summit between Abbas and Olmert will be held soon but he didn't disclose the specific date.

"The meeting will be very important because it comes after the Israeli-Palestinian-American trilateral summit and Mecca accords," Erekat added.

He said the formation of a Palestinian national unity government as envisaged in the Makkah agreement between Fatah and Hamas would be highlighted in the meeting, adding that his remarks do not aim at "frustrating anyone's expectations."

According to Palestinian officials, Abbas postponed the expected announcement of the unity government till his meeting with Olmert in a bid to convince Israel to deal with the new government.

However, Olmert's aides announced the summit is scheduled to discuss humanitarian issues.

Abbas, Olmert last met Feb 19 in a three-party meeting with US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, which failed to make headway into the stalled Israeli-Palestinian peace process.

Israel and the US brand Hamas a terrorist organisation unless it recognises Israel. In the last summit, reports said Olmert blamed moderate Abbas for entering in coalition with Hamas