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Little Enthusiasm in the Territories over Peres’ Meeting with Palestinians

August 5, 1986
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

There is little enthusiasm in the territories over Sunday’s meeting between Premier Shimon Peres and a group of 25 Palestinians from the West Bank.

Hanna Seniora, who has the approval of both Israel and the PLO to represent the Palestinians in any future peace negotiations, told the JTA that Israel was on the wrong course by refusing to deal directly with the PLO.

Seniora, an editor of the pro-PLO East Jerusalem newspaper AI-Fajr, had not been among those invited to the meeting between Peres and the Palestinians. Seniora called the meeting a reflection of misguided policy and said he would be happy to meet with Peres in order to tell him just that.

In the wake of this chilly reception, Sunday’s meeting was not expected to be followed by immediate political developments.

It was seen here as fulfilling a pledge by Peres to King Hassan II of Morocco to speak to “authentic” Palestinians. The meeting was also viewed as a part of an ongoing process of weakening the pro-PLO elements and strengthening supporters of Jordan in the territories.

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