News Brief

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said he will propose releasing 250 Fatah prisoners from Israeli prisons as a goodwill gesture to the Palestinians. Speaking Monday at the Sharm el-Sheik summit in Egypt, Olmert also said he would work with the new Palestinian government, which he considers a “real partner” for peace, on an ongoing basis. As expected, Olmert pledged at the summit to renew security and military cooperation with the Palestinian Authority, improve freedom of movement for West Bank Palestinians, expand commercial ties in the West Bank, transfer Palestinian tax revenues being held by Israel and allow humanitarian supplies into the Gaza Strip, including medicine, food, water and electricity. There is no solution other than two states living side by side peacefully, Olmert said. P.A. President Mahmoud Abbas reiterated his desire for a single Palestinian state in the West Bank and Gaza Strip existing peacefully beside Israel.

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