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Abbas In Damascus For Talks On Ending Factional Fighting --> Palestinian Authority President Mahmud Abbas (RFE/RL) January 20, 2007 -- Palestinian Authority President Mahmud Abbas today met with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in Damascus to discuss ways to end the battle for power between Palestinian factions.

Officials also say Abbas is due to have a highly anticipated meeting with Khaled Mashaal, the political leader of Hamas.

Tensions between Abbas' Fatah faction and the ruling Hamas claimed more than 30 lives in December.

(dpa, AFP, Reuters)

The Middle East Crisis
Israeli tanks poised on the border with Lebanon on August 2 (epa)

CLASH OF ARMS: Since mid-July, Israel has been battling Hizballah guerrillas in southern Lebanon and carrying out punishing air strikes throughout the country. International efforts to broker a cease-fire have met with one obstacle after another, as civilian casualties mount and a humanitarian crisis unfolds. Since Hizballah is closely supported by Syria and Iran, the conflict threatens constantly to develop into a regional conflagration.... (more)


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