Geneva Initiative Annexes
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Half of Israelis want talks with PA unity government

By Roee Nahmias, Ynet, 14.02.07

Forty-six percent of Jewish population in country supports renewing negotiations with Hamas-Fatah cabinet, if established. 'Olmert must answer challenge, start dialogue, says Geneva Initiative official


Forty-six percent of the Jewish population in Israel supports renewing negotiations with a Palestinian unity government if and when it is established, reveals a study conducted on behalf of the Geneva Initiative.
 
The survey found that 37.4 percent object to such negotiations and 16.1 percent of the people asked replied that they did not know.
 
Members of the Geneva Initiative were satisfied by these results. "After a six-year standstill, the Mecca accord will lead to the establishment of a Palestinian unity government, providing an opportunity for Israel to renew negotiations for a permanent solution," said Gadi Baltiansky, Director General of the Geneva Initiative.
 
Start negotiations as soon as possible
"Our studies, performed on a regular basis, show us that the majority of Israelis demand that the government return to the negotiation table. They accept the outline of the Geneva Accord as a basis for the permanent solution. The prime minister (Ehud Olmert) has to answer the challenge and start the dialogue without delay," Baltiansky said.
 
At a special meeting scheduled for Wednesday evening in Tel Aviv, Israeli Housing and Construction Minister Meir Sheetrit will meet with Faris Qadoura, one of the leaders of the Geneva Initiative and a Hamas official.
 
This is the first public meeting between Israeli and Palestinian officials since the Mecca accord, in which Faris was involved. His name has come up as a possible minister in the unity government.