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Fatah accepts 12% land swap with Israel

Fatah Central Committee has accepted a 12 per cent land swap with Israel, an informed source revealed to the Palestinian newspaper Al-Resalah yesterday.

According to the sources, the issue was discussed in the Central Committee meeting held on 25 May headed by Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud Abbas.

The sources said that this is far greater than the offer made by the former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert in 2008. Olmert requested that the PA offer 6.3 per cent of the West Bank and East Jerusalem area in return for 5.8 per cent of Israeli land.

Read: Knesset calls for permanent annexation of West Bank

In response to the Israeli request, the PA agreed then on a 1.9 per cent land swap, but the Israeli side rejected this.

Meanwhile, the source said that the PA had agreed to resume peace negotiations without pre-conditions. He noted that the release of the fourth batch of veteran prisoners from Israeli jails, halting settlement construction and having international referees for the peace talks are no longer preconditions for resuming talks.

About the practical measures related to this issue, the source revealed to Al-Resalah that the PA is going to dispatch a five-member team to Washington to discuss the plan and mechanisms to implement it. The source referred to it as Trump's plan.

The chief PA negotiator, Saeb Erekat, is going to head the team. In addition to economic experts, Major General Majed Faraj, the chief of the PA intelligence services, will be a member of the team.

Peace talks between the PA and Israel stopped in April 2014 after nine months of US and EU-brokered efforts to push Israel to halt settlement and recognise the 1967 borders.

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