Hamas must disarm, recognise Israel under Palestinian unity deal

13 October, 2017, 00:38 | Author: Ora Austin
  • Ismail Haneiya Khalid Fawzi

Rival Palestinian factions Hamas and Fatah have signed a reconciliation deal after Hamas agreed to hand over administrative control of Gaza, including the key Rafah border crossing, a decade after seizing the enclave in a civil war.

The prime minister said he considered Hamas "responsible for all acts of terrorism originating in Gaza", and called on the Palestinian Authority to prevent terror in the West Bank.

Meanwhile, Egypt invited the convening of a meeting in Cairo on 21/11/2017 for all the Palestinian factions that signed the Palestinian National Accord Agreement on May 4, 2011.

Certain success in overcoming the split was reached in September when Cairo hosted talks of Egypt's intelligence first with the Hamas delegation and then with Fatah emissaries.

Mr Abbas will visit Gaza in "less than a month", a Fatah official told Agence France-Presse.

The deal, reportedly concluded at dawn this morning, includes a provision for Gaza to be handed over to a unity government, led by Fatah, by December 1.

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He added that sanctions taken by Abbas against Gaza will also soon be lifted. In June 2007, its militants seized power in the Gaza Strip.

Israel viewed the Palestinian accord warily, saying it must abide by previous worldwide agreements and terms set out by the Quartet of Middle East peace mediators - including the recognition of Israel and the disarming of Hamas. Hamas and Fatah organisations began negotiations on reconciliation last Tuesday through Egypt.

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.

Saleh al-Arouri, deputy head of Hamas's influential Political Bureau, also voiced appreciation for the role played by Egypt in sponsoring inter-Palestinian dialogue.

Reconciliation could also pose a dilemma for global efforts to reach an Israeli-Palestinian peace deal since Hamas has not recognised Israel, unlike the Abbas-led Palestine Liberation Organisation.

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