Palestinian factions Fatah and Hamas sign reconciliation deal in major breakthrough

13 October, 2017, 00:42 | Author: Irene Delgado
  • Palestinian factions Fatah and Hamas sign reconciliation deal in major breakthrough

Rival Palestinian factions Hamas and Fatah have reached agreement on aspects of their reconciliation bid during talks mediated by Egypt in Cairo this week, Hamas said on Thursday.

The Islamic militant Hamas evicted Abbas' Western-backed Palestinian Authority from Gaza a decade ago, leading to a crippling territorial and political split among Palestinians. Such a move would restore a great deal of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas' influence in Gaza while weakening Hamas' control.

The Hamas official said Hamas, Fatah and smaller Palestinian factions would meet next month to discuss other issues related to reconciliation, including holding long-overdue parliamentary and presidential elections.

Hamas and Fatah reached an agreement to end the 10 years national division during the second session of the reconciliation meeting held in Cairo today.

It was signed in Cairo by new Hamas deputy leader Salah al-Aruri and Azzam al-Ahmad, the head of the Fatah delegation for the talks, at the headquarters of Egypt's intelligence service, which oversaw the negotiations.

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He said the unity government would "run all institutions without exception", including all border crossings with Israel and in Rafah, Gaza's only access point with Egypt.

The official was referring to the diplomatic Quartet on Middle East peace, which includes the United Nations, the United States, the European Union and Russian Federation.

Since then, the relations between the two rival factions have been very tense and all attempts to reconcile them over the past years have failed to bring fruit.

Al-Ahmed highly appreciated the Egyptian role and keenness to achieve Palestinian reconciliation, stressing that Egypt is the sponsor of the Arab national security, including the Palestinian security. Internal Palestinian strife has been a major obstacle to peacemaking, with Hamas having fought three wars with Israel since 2008 and continuing to call for its destruction.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has warned Palestinians against "bogus reconciliations", and reiterated Tel Aviv's demand for the disbandment of Hamas's military arm.

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