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Palestinian president prepares U.N. appeal

Abbas to outline plan for independent state

Mideast-Gaza-What-Now-Analysis-8-24

Aides to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said Sunday that he will soon appeal to the international community to set a deadline for Israel to end its occupation of lands captured in the 1967 Mideast war and make way for an independent Palestinian state.

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RAMALLAH, West Bank — Aides to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said Sunday that he will soon appeal to the international community to set a deadline for Israel to end its occupation of lands captured in the 1967 Mideast war and make way for an independent Palestinian state.

The aides said Mr. Abbas would present his proposal as part of a “day after” plan following the end of the current war in the Gaza Strip.

Mr. Abbas is expected to outline his plan at a meeting of the Palestinian leadership on Tuesday.

One official said that Mr. Abbas has grown disillusioned after two decades of failed efforts to reach a negotiated peace settlement with Israel. He said the Palestinians want a fixed date for an Israeli withdrawal from lands claimed by the Palestinians and a timetable for establishing a Palestinian state.

In the Gaza Strip on Sunday, Israeli airstrikes leveled a seven-floor office building and severely damaged a two-story shopping center, signaling a new escalation in seven weeks of fighting with Hamas.

The strikes in the southern town of Rafah occurred just hours after Israel bombed a residential tower in Gaza City, collapsing the 12-story building with 44 apartments.

A total of eight people were killed in Sunday’s airstrikes. Israel said one of the dead was a Hamas official involved in handling the group’s finances.

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