January 31, 2008
Israeli strategists weigh Gaza options
(Page 2 - Previous Page)After meeting with Olmert on Sunday, Palestinian negotiators said the prime minister told them that he wants to transfer responsibility for Gaza's humanitarian problems to Egypt. He also said he was opposed to the Palestinian Authority controlling Gaza's border crossing points because that would entail a deal between the Fatah-led Palestinian Authority and Hamas.
Olmert also apparently warned the negotiators that if they tried to exploit the current situation to negotiate a power-sharing arrangement with Hamas, Israel immediately would suspend the post-Annapolis peace talks.
Barak, generally thought to be behind the failed Gaza siege policy -- bringing economic pressure to bear on Palestinians in Gaza in the hope that it would lead them to topple Hamas -- is now urging Egypt to reseal the border with Gaza.
"It's in its interest as much as Israel's," Barak said.
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