Jerusalem Israel and the Palestinians have agreed to start drafting sections of a proposed peace accord that address the main issues of their conflict, the chief Palestinian negotiator said.
Ahmed Qureia, the veteran negotiator heading the Palestinian team, said the decision did not mean an agreement had been reached on the major issues that have tormented peace talks for years: final borders, the status of disputed Jerusalem and the fate of Palestinian refugees.
But it is the first time since negotiations resumed more than six months ago that anything will be put to paper on these divisive questions.
"We agreed with the Israelis to begin writing the positions," Qureia told reporters late Friday. He did not say what issue the two sides would start with.
Israeli government officials declined to comment.