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Hamas team in Cairo to discuss Gaza plan?

Aug. 3, 2004 at 8:51 AM

CAIRO, Aug. 3 (UPI) -- A Hamas delegation held talks with Egyptian officials Tuesday, apparently on an Egyptian plan for Gaza after Israel's withdrawal.

Egyptian and Palestinian official sources said Hamas Politburo chief Khaled Mashaal headed the militant group's delegation, which conferred with Egyptian intelligence chief Omar Suleiman, who is in charge of the Palestinian file.

But Hamas spokesman Osama Hamdan denied reports about the possibility of resuming an inter-Palestinian dialogue.

"This is not possible at the moment, and there is no intention to start such a dialogue," Hamdan told UPI.

The sources said Suleiman briefed Hamas on his contacts with Israel and the Palestinian Authority and their comments on an Egyptian plan to ensure security and stability in Gaza.

They said Egypt is trying to convince Hamas to enlist in PA security agencies, which will be in charge of security in Gaza in order, to avoid friction among Palestinian factions.

Hamas talks in Cairo coincided with a visit by a Fatah team led by Rawhi Ftouh, the head of the Palestinian Legislative Council, to Egypt.

Ftouh said the visit is private and not related to any efforts to resume discussions with Hamas.

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