As Abbas expresses support for Olmert, Israeli leader says the two won't meet
Acting Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert stated on Wednesday that he had had no intention of meeting Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas after upcoming elections in Israel at the end of March.
The statement, made to reporters of the Jerusalem Post, comes on the same day that Italian publication Corriere della Sera quoted Abbas as saying that he supports Olmert in the elections.
"I know him well," the Palestinian president said, "I believe that with him we could work in a productive way," he added.
Olmert explained "The PA is one authority, the minute the dominant force in the PA is Hamas, then why [meet]?"
Olmert also added that by the year 2010, he aimed to delineate permanent borders for Israel, whereby "Israel will completely separate from the majority of the Palestinian population."
He stressed that the Israeli public would be consulted on the matter of final borders.
"I intend to speak to everyone, and first and foremost the public that lives in the territories," he said, referring to Israeli settlers living in the West Bank.