Palestinian Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas said he hopes to have a cease-fire deal with militants in hand for a summit with President Bush next week, as the U.S. Embassy warned of possible plans to kidnap Americans in the Gaza Strip. Israel has demanded Abbas crack down decisively on Palestinian militant groups in the West Bank and Gaza responsible for attacks against Israelis. Abbas has said he preferred to use persuasion to stop the attacks. Abbas said Friday that militant group Hamas could agree within a few days to a cease-fire agreement, and hoped to have one in hand before Wednesday’s summit with Bush and Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon. “I believe we will reach a full agreement that we will be able to trust and to act on,” he told Israeli television Friday night. The leader of the Islamic Jihad militant group also offered a conditional cease-fire. However, the Al Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades, linked to the mainstream Fatah movement, said it would continue attacks. Full Story
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