Top Palestinian Leaders Abbas, Fayyad Reportedly Cut All Contact With Each Other

Discord apparently erupted after Fayyad refused to deliver a letter from Abbas to Netanyahu listing Palestinian demands.

Communication channels between Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Prime Minister Salam Fayyad are completely cut off, Al Quds Al Arabi reported on Sunday in London. According to the report, the two top Palestinian officials cut all forms of communication, after Fayyad refused to head a delegation to meet Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu last week.

According to the report, Abbas refuses to answer Fayyad's calls, and the presidential office is refraining from scheduling a meeting between the two to decide on changes in Fayyad's government.

Salam Fayad, Mahmoud Abbas, June 17, 2007 - AP

Last Tuesday, Fayyad refused to head a delegation to meet Netanyahu and deliver a missive concerning the freeze in peace talks from Abbas addressed to the Israeli Prime Minister. An Israeli source said that Fayyad's refusal came after disagreements with Abbas over the letter, thinking it would not lead to a breakthrough.

In place of Fayyad, Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat led the Palestinian delegation, accompanied with West Bank Intelligence Chief Majed Farag. The meeting took place in Jerusalem and lasted about 1 hour and 20 minutes.

The sides decided on a follow-up meeting between Netanyahu's envoy Yitzhak Molcho and Abbas, which is due to take place next week. At the meeting Molcho will give Abbas a letter with Netanyahu's response. Netanyahu's letter will include his position on the future Palestinian borders and the security measures Israel will demand as a part of a final settlement with the Palestinians.

Read this article in Hebrew.