Palestinians resume official activity in Jerusalem

Monday, February 18, 2008 |  by Staff Writer

A senior Palestinian official who spoke to Voice of Israel radio on Monday confirmed that Palestinian Authority security and intelligence personnel are again operating on a limited basis in the eastern half of Jerusalem.

The official said that the Palestinian Authority is also again using its previous eastern Jerusalem headquarters, dubbed the "Orient House," to arrange and hold diplomatic meetings.

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert promised the nation last week that he was not yet negotiating with the Palestinians over future control of Jerusalem, and that the Palestinian Authority would not be permitted to operate in the city.

Israeli law and the terms of Israel's previous agreements with the Palestinians prohibit official Palestinian Authority government, security and intelligence activity in Jerusalem.

However, the Palestinians insist that a final status peace agreement is not possible unless Israel surrenders the half of Jerusalem previously occupied by Jordan. Mr. Olmert and his top deputies have all expressed a willingness to meet that demand.

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