Hamas chief meets with Egyptian FM, Brotherhood supreme guide

A Hamas delegation led by the movement’s political bureau chief, Khaled Meshaal, held talks late on Wednesday with Egyptian Foreign Minister Mohamed Kamel Amr.

During the meeting, which was held at the Foreign Ministry, the two tackled bilateral relations and Palestinian developments, particularly reconciliation between various factions.

A reliable Hamas source said the delegation, which includes Moussa Abu Marzouq, Samy Khater, Mohamed Nasr and Nezar Awadallah, visited the Muslim Brotherhood headquarters and met with Supreme Guide Mohamed Badie.

Meshaal also met with Egyptian intelligence officials Wednesday to discuss reconciliation between Hamas and the secular Fatah party, led by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, and to discuss a potential prisoner swap.

Egypt has been mediating talks between Israel and Hamas over a deal to release Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, who was captured in a cross-border raid in 2006, in exchange for about 1000 Palestinians currently detained in Israeli prisons.

Israeli defense official Amos Gilad visited Cairo last week to discuss "issues of concern" to Israel.

Negotiations over Shalit's release have stalled previously over which prisoners will be among those Israel agrees to release.

Israel freed hundreds of Palestinian prisoners in previous swaps in 1985 and 2004 in exchange for Israelis held by Palestinian groups.

Meshaal has been living in exile in Syria while Hamas runs the Gaza Strip. The Islamist group is a sworn enemy of Israel and has refused to sign onto interim peace agreements that the Western-backed Palestinian Authority have reached with Israel.

Translated from the Arabic Edition

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