Haniyeh resumes call for talks with Fatah
Sacked Hamas prime minister Ismail Haniyeh on Tuesday repeated his call for talks with Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas to end the crisis stemming from his movement's seizure of Gaza Strip. Speaking to reporters, Haniyeh welcomed a call from Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak for inter-Palestinian dialogue made at a four-way Middle East summit in Egypt late on Monday.
"We warmly welcome the call for dialogue made by President Mubarak to the Palestinian people. We think this call mirrors a good understanding of the complexities of the situation, which can be resolved only through dialogue.
"From now on we have made it known we are ready for dialogue," added Haniyeh.
Meanwhile, Tony Blair said Tuesday he is prepared to help bring about a solution to the Israeli-Palestinian issue, amid claims he is to become an envoy to the region after stepping down as British prime minister. Monday's edition of the Financial Times said the four major players in the Middle East peace process will agree on Blair as their new envoy when they meet in Jerusalem Tuesday.
Blair did not confirm or deny the report when asked about it at a news conference. "I think that anybody who cares about greater peace and stability in the world knows that a lasting and enduring resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian issue is essential," Blair told reporters. "And I will do whatever I can to help such a resolution come about."