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Palestinian unity talks yield election date

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Palestinian reconciliation talks yielded an agreement on a date for new elections.

While the talks being mediated by Egypt have so far failed to achieve a Palestinian unity government, the groups did agree to hold presidential and legislative elections in January, Reuters reported Monday.

A Dubai newspaper reported Sunday that Egypt summoned Hamas leader-in-exile Khaled Mashaal and General of the Islamic Jihad Ramadan Abdullah Shallah to Cairo to help draft a unity agreement.

Talks over the weekend ground to a halt after Fatah demanded that a new government accept all previous agreements signed between Israel and the Palestinians, including the Oslo Accords and Israel’s right to exist, according to reports.

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas also refused to release all Hamas prisoners being held in Palestinian prisons.

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