by Saud Abu Ramadan
RAMALLAH, Aug. 16 (Xinhua) -- Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said on Saturday that the Palestinians want to end the fighting in the Gaza Strip and end the Israeli killing of Palestinians and destructions in the coastal enclave.
Abbas said at the start of a meeting of Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) held at his office in Ramallah that the Palestinians are sticking to the Egyptian initiative for a cease- fire agreement with Israel.
Members of the Palestinian delegation to the indirect cease- fire talks attended the meeting, and were scheduled to head to Cairo for a new round of talks that will start for two days on Sunday and Monday.
"Egypt is not just a mediator, but is a party and we are not going to make this party neutral, and we will never accept any other party to replace Egypt," said Abbas.
Earlier on Saturday, Izzat al-Resheq, a senior Islamic Hamas movement leader and a member in the Palestinian team to negotiate a cease-fire deal with Israel said in press statement that Hamas rejects the Egyptian proposals.
"Egypt's proposals for a permanent cease-fire deal with Israel are rejected. What was offered and presented to the Palestinian side until the last moment before leaving Cairo wasn't and will never be accepted," said al-Resheq.
He added that the Palestinian delegation reiterated the rejection of any proposals that doesn't meet the Palestinian demands.
Ismail Radwan, a senior Hamas leader in Gaza confirmed to the pro-Hamas al-Resalah weekly newspaper that Hamas rejects the Egyptian proposal to postpone the debates and talks in terms of building seaport and airport in Gaza Strip.
Earlier on Saturday, Sami Abu Zuhri, Hamas spokesman in Gaza, told Xinhua that the Palestinian delegation would arrive in Cairo on Saturday evening to prepare for resuming the indirect talks, sponsored by Egypt, on reaching a cease-fire with Israel.
"The ball is at Israel's playground," he said, adding that "the Palestinian factions are ready for any possibility and still stick to its demands and requirements," said Abu Zuhri.
"The Palestinian leadership will never accept any agreement that doesn't meet the legal rights of our people and their goals," el-Ahmed said in interview with the official Palestinian Television.
He added that the Palestinian delegation "is united to gain back what the Israeli occupation had taken from our people's rights, mainly building up the seaport, the airport and guaranteeing a free travel for all the Palestinians."
On July 8, the Israeli army launched a large-scale air and ground military operation against the Gaza Strip, saying the aim of the offensive is to rein on militant groups and prevent rockets firing into Israel.
So far, 1,980 Palestinians were killed and more than 10,000 wounded, while around 250,000 people became displaced after their houses were destroyed.