Report: Abbas to boycott Arab summit if Hamas' Meshal attends
Libya, which is hosting the March summit, plans a Fatah-Hamas meet, according to Al-Jazeera.
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas plans to boycott the Arab League summit planned for March 27 if Hamas political bureau chief Khaled Meshal attends, according to a report Saturday on Al-Jazeera.
According to the report, senior PA officials said they have received information that Libya, which is hosting the summit, is planning a bid to have the two leaders sign a reconciliation agreement.
The report adds that Abbas is wary of Egypt's response to such a reconciliation effort. Egypt has been mediating reconciliation talks between Fatah and Hamas that have thus far been unsuccessful.
Abbas has notified Libya, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Jordan that he objects to meeting the Hamas chief unless he signs the reconciliation deal mediated by Egypt.
Libyan leader Muammar Gadhafi invited Abbas for an official visit to discuss reconciliation prior to the summit's start. However, PA officials have said that the meeting would take place only if Egypt gives a green light.
The Al-Jazeera report added that the PA wants Russia to pressure Hamas to sign an accord and that Abbas even discussed the matter with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, who met this week with Meshal in Moscow.