Sunday, July 28, 2002

More on the supposed ceasefire ... This Hebrew article quotes London-based Arabic newspaper al-Hayat to the effect that a document had been prepared outlining the steps that Fatah would take:

1. Fatah would openly make a call for a cessation of attacks on targets within the Green Line, while insisting on the right to "oppose the occupation" of the 1967 lands.
2. Fatah takes upon itself to try to convince Hamas to refrain from attacking Israel
3. A Fatah official will write op-eds in the WaPo and al-Hayat urging a ceasefire.
4. This is only temporary and depends on Israel "fulfilling its part"

So in essence there was a lot of diplomatic effort (reportedly between Mohamed Dahlan and EU officials) resulting in an Arafat-style "call for a ceasefire" - rather than lockup or even coordination with local terror leaders. The main differences between this announcement and Arafat's previous ones are: 1) this one has someone other than Arafat making it; 2) this one includes some points to try to avoid the "saying one thing in English and something else in Arabic" loophole.

Some ceasefire. And from the text provided there is no indication that attacks that Israeli civilians in the West Bank would be halted.

The plan is said to have European backing, which would seem to mean that Europe accepts the possibility of Fatah sending more Islamikazes into Israel when they decide to renege. The EU would have used the document to pressure Israel to withdraw from PA cities. Fatah now says that the plan is "on hold until it responds to the butchery in Gaza".

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