May 08,2007 00:00
GAZA - Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas ran into a brick wall in Gaza in his bid to convince Hamas leaders a U.S. peace plan would benefit Palestinians.
Abbas praised the plan that calls for setting timetables for clamping down on militant groups and easing Israeli restrictions on Palestinian movement, but sources told the Jerusalem Post that Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh refused to endorse it.
After meeting with Haniyeh, Abbas told reporters there was a great deal of mistrust.
"Hamas does not want to change its position regarding the American plan," he said. "They are convinced that this is a new American-Israeli conspiracy against Hamas."
The newspaper said the Palestinian radical groups Islamic Jihad and the Popular Resistance Committees also issued statements Sunday warning the Palestinian leadership against accepting the U.S. peace plan.
Abbas also met with opposition from members of his own Fatah party's militant wing, the Aksa Martyrs Brigades, the report said.
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