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  • » 02/27/2009, 00.00

    PALESTINE

    Hamas-Fatat agree on eve of donors’ conference



    Palestinian factions agree to process that should lead to a national unity government. Thus aid for Gaza reconstruction should start flowing in. Israeli daily Haaretz writes that recent war benefited Hamas.

    Cairo (AsiaNews/Agencies) – Hamas and Fatah as well as smaller Palestinian factions have agreed to form five committees to address security issues and the formation of an election commission. This should lead to the formation of a national unity government (negotiators pictured). The committees are set to begin work 10 March and complete their work at the end of the month.

    As a first sign of reconciliation, on the eve of the talks both sides have agreed to free their respective prisoners.

    In November of last year Egypt had originally tried to promote intra-Palestinian reconciliation but failed when Hamas withdrew at the last minute, accusing Fatah of arresting its members in the West Bank.

    The breakthrough came ahead of an international donor conference in Egypt that hopes to raise money for the reconstruction of the Gaza Strip by Israel's 22-day war on the territory.

    Western countries are among the donors but they have resisted helping Hamas, a movement deemed terrorist by the United States and Europe.

    Hamas had however benefited from the war with Israel, this according to opinion polls in the territories reported by Israeli daily Haaretz. A probable exchange of abducted Israeli solider Gilad Shalit for more than 1,000 Palestinian prisoners should further boost its prestige.

    In the Israeli army’s current review of its performance during the war, an encouraging picture is emerging in terms of its professionalism, control over units, aerial assistance to ground forces, quality of intelligence and logistics compared to war against Hizbollah.

    However, at the diplomatic level the major damage Cast Lead did was in legitimising Hamas as the ruler of the Gaza Strip.

    The paper notes that on the eve of a visit by the new US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton instead of “coming to talk to Israel about the Iranian threat,” she “will focus on the problems of the Palestinians in Gaza. That might be the greatest damage of all.”

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    See also

    26/02/2009 PALESTINE
    Hamas and Fatah release prisoners, hope to rebuild Gaza
    A national dialogue should lead to a caretaker government able to gain international recognition and 3 billion dollars in aid for Gaza. The population remains by and large cautious since both groups have been plagued by corruption.

    03/12/2008 EGYPT - PALESTINE
    Hamas: no pilgrimage to Mecca for faithful of Gaza Strip
    Their offense is that they asked for permission to leave from the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank, controlled by Fatah. An internal power struggle is affecting the Muslims, and is judged as "an abominable crime" by the highest Sunni authority in Egypt. The news is raising ironic comments from Israeli newspapers.

    07/10/2009 PALESTINE - ISRAEL
    Closed-door discussion in UN over war crimes in Gaza. Abbas in the eye of the storm
    The discussion will take place at the Security Council, at the request of the Libyan representative. Proposal also supported by the Palestinian mission to the UN. After protests critical of Abbas, the Ramallah government recognizes its "mistake" in slowing down discussions of the Goldstone report in Geneva. In Gaza, banners against Abbas, calling him a "traitor".

    07/05/2010 PALESTINE – ISRAEL
    Palestinians continue to back talks with Israel
    Survey indicates a majority of Palestinians wants negotiations to re-start. Most also are against firing al-Qassam rockets from Gaza into Israel or the start of a third intifada. More than 50 per cent trust Fatah more than Hamas. In case of presidential elections, they would vote for the Fatah candidate.

    15/06/2007 PALESTINE
    Hamas, the era of Islamic law in full control of Gaza
    Fatah’s last bastion, the presidential palace, falls; the president of the PA dissolves the government and calls for early elections. Fighters cry victory and urge the advent of Islamic law, but premier Haniyeh excludes the creation of a sate in the Strip. The hand of Tehran and Damascus.



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