Berlin’s support for Palestinian Authority depends on Hamas recognizing Israel, abandoning terrorism and honoring former undertakings – Chancellor Merkel in Jerusalem
She said she would inform Mahmoud Abbas whom she meets in Ramallah Monday that a Palestinian Authority that included Hamas cannot be directly supported by EU money as long as the group refuses to give up violence and refuses to acknowledge Israel’s right to exist.
In Brussels, European Union foreign ministers met Monday to discuss cutting off aid to the PA in the wake of the Hamas victory. They called on Hamas to join the peace process with Israel. US secretary of state Condoleezza Rice called on the EU to stand by its pledge to withhold aid from the Palestinians until Hamas renounces terrorism.
In Jerusalem, Merkel met opposition leader Binyamin Netanyahu and former foreign minister Silvan Shalom. They stressed the importance of the Israel and the West standing by their boycott of a Hamas-ruled Palestinian government.
Egyptian foreign minister Ahmed Abu Ghait said continuing Western economic assistance to the Palestinian Authority despite the Hamas victory was essential for Middle East stability.