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Tuesday, July 08, 2003

JPost: Abbas cancels meeting with Sharon

Palestinian Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas has canceled a planned Wednesday meeting with Prime Minister Ariel Sharon over an internal crisis within the Fatah organization, Palestinian sources said Tuesday.

According to the sources, Abbas canceled the meeting after facing fierce opposition in the Fatah, of which Abbas is a senior member, over the way he has been running negotiations with Israel, Israel Radio reported.

Abbas was scheduled to meet with Sharon to discuss the release of several hundred Palestinian prisoners from Israeli jails.

According to a senior Palestinian source, several Fatah general council members Monday night demanded that Abbas resign.

According to the source, Abbas sent two letters to Chairman Yasser Arafat - one asking for instructions how to run the Palestinian government and negotiations with Israel and the second letter asking to resign from the Fatah Central Committee.