Hamas, Fatah to push for reconciliation
EGYPT: Palestinian President Mahmud Abbas and exiled Hamas chief
Khaled Meshaal have agreed to expedite a stalled reconciliation deal
between the rival factions, a Hamas official said Thursday.
The decision came at a meeting in Cairo that was the first in almost
a year between the West Bank's Fatah leader Abbas and Meshaal, who heads
the Hamas movement that rules the Gaza Strip, and was aimed at ending
years of bitter and sometimes deadly rivalry.
“The two parties agreed to call on all Palestinian factions to
implement the reconciliation agreement,” Hamas politburo member Izzat
al-Rishq, who attended the gathering, told AFP. It was held in a “very
good and promising atmosphere,” he added.
Fatah and Hamas officials will meet soon to discuss further
developments, Rishq said, but did not give a date or more details.
“Fatah and Hamas agree on launching measures of reconciliation,”
Egyptian state television quoted Yasser Ali, spokesman for Egypt's
Islamist President Mohamed Morsi, as saying.
On their visit to Cairo, Abbas and Meshaal also held separate talks
Meshaal and Abbas focused on implementing the Egypt-brokered April
2011 unity agreement aimed at ending years of infighting that was signed
in May that year, but whose main provisions have yet to be put into
The Palestinian national movements' rivalry exploded into violence in
June 2007 when Hamas forces seized control of Gaza a year after they won
a landslide victory in parliamentary elections.
Meshaal met Abbas in Cairo in February 2012, but there has been
little progress towards ending the crippling divide between their
movements. In his meeting with Abbas, Morsi discussed Palestinian
reconciliation, the Israeli blockade of Gaza and the financial woes of
the West Bank-based Palestinian Authority, which Fatah dominates.