Other Package Agreement, or Neither – Palestinian Negotiation Group Head

Israel Materials 19 February 2008 14:52 (UTC +04:00)

Israel, Jerusalem/ Trend corr. R.Abadullayev / Palestine received with anger the statement by Ehud Olmert, Israeli President, that negotiations concerning the status of Jerusalem would be held in the last stage of negotiations, NEWSRU reported. This statement was made during the recent visit of Mahmoud Abbas, chairman of Palestinian Autonomy, to meet with Olmert.

Notably, Olmert stated that the future of Jerusalem was a very special issue and discussions have been fraught with interruptions during negotiations, during the meeting of leaders of Jewish organization of the North America.

"I do not know if we will be able to reach an agreement with the Palestinians and we will do our best. However, we will not begin negotiations on the most complex of issues. The destiny of Jerusalem will be discussed last,' Olmert said. Olmert noted that the parties were unable to reach an agreement within the set term and they had to be satisfied with 'principal agreements'.

Saib Arikat, head of the Palestinian negotiation group, stated that the most important thing in the process was to settle all issues including the so-called key issues.

The Shas party has threatened to leave the governmental coalition if the status of Jerusalem will be discussed during negotiations with Palestine.