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Israeli presidential hopeful supports Palestinian deal

In an interview with Al-Monitor, Meir Sheetrit supports Hamas-Fatah reconciliation, even though this might not be the most popular stance with the Israeli public for a presidential hopeful.
Israel's Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni, Transport Minister Shaul Mofaz (C) and Interior Minister Meir Sheetrit (L) attend the weekly cabinet meeting in Jerusalem September 14, 2008. Israel's cabinet debated for the first time on Sunday a proposal to offer compensation to Jewish settlers who volunteer to leave parts of the West Bank that would be handed to the Palestinians in a future peace deal.
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“There is no reason to be alarmed by the Fatah-Hamas agreement. This actually could be an opportunity for us,” says Knesset member Meir Sheetrit (the Hatnua Party chairman) as he attempts to moderate the aggressive responses evinced by Israel’s prime minister and the right-wing ministers toward the news of the Palestinian reconciliation.

This is a brave stance, uttered loud and clear. His manner seems to contradict what is expected of someone running for the role of president, and is supposed to try and please as many Knesset members as possible. After all, they are the ones who will make the decision. But Sheetrit swims against the current, and not for the first time.

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