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Israeli Officials to Meet with Abbas on Sunday in Egypt


Israel's government says two top officials will meet with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas on Sunday at an economic forum in Egypt.

It will be the highest-level meeting between Israel and the Palestinians since the militant group Hamas won Palestinian elections in January, defeating Mr. Abbas' Fatah movement.

The office of Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni confirms that she and Vice Prime Minister Shimon Peres will meet with Mr. Abbas Sunday in Sharm el-Sheikh.

Senior Palestinian official Saeb Erekat on Thursday announced plans for the talks.

The meeting will come as Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert prepares to travel to Washington for talks with President Bush Tuesday. Mr. Olmert has ruled out peace talks with Hamas until it renounces violence and recognizes Israel's right to exist.

Mr. Olmert is expected to seek Mr. Bush's support for his plan to implement a partial withdrawal from the West Bank and set Israel's borders, with or without agreement from the Palestinians.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and Reuters.

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