EXCLUSIVE – Fatah Official: We Are Preparing to Govern the Gaza Strip

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THOMAS COEX/AFP/Getty

TEL AVIV — Fatah Revolutionary Council secretary Fayez Abou Aita told Breitbart Jerusalem in an interview that his movement is preparing to return to power in the Gaza Strip amid progress in Egyptian-brokered talks toward reconciliation between Fatah and the Hamas terrorist group.

Fatah is the group led by Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas. A delegation led by PA Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah is expected to visit the Gaza Strip this week amid progress in the reconciliation talks.

The visit comes after Hamas declared last week that it is prepared to dismantle the shadow government it maintains in the Gaza Strip in parallel to the government of the Palestinian Authority, which is supposed to control the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.

According to Abou Aita, Abbas’s Fatah movement is interested in the success of reconciliation with Hamas, “a reconciliation that we’ve acted to achieve for many years.”

Abou Aita said that the government of the Palestinian Authority has been preparing for a long time to govern the Gaza Strip and it has the ability to rule the enclave if Hamas allows it.

He noted that Hamdallah will meet representatives of the Fatah movement in Gaza during his trip there, along with representatives of the various Palestinian factions. They will discuss ways to help the government fulfill the commitments it made in meetings with Hamas, mediated by Egyptian intelligence.

The Fatah official added that during the last round of meetings in Cairo, “We thought there was desire from Hamas to bring success to the government’s work and ease the handing over of government institutions, including security institutions, to the government. The delegation will also include security officials in order to fast track the discussions with those responsible in Hamas for the handing over of all the institutions and all the portfolios to the Palestinian Authority government.”

Abou Aita added that an Egyptian delegation will arrive in Gaza next week at the same time as the arrival of the PA government delegation and a United Nations delegation led by the UN secretary general’s special envoy to the region, Nikolai Mladenov.

Abou Aita revealed that a delegation of the Palestinian factions is expected to leave for Cairo immediately after in hopes of making progress toward negotiations for the completion of the reconciliation, all under Egyptian mediation and sponsorship.

According to Abou Aita, among the issues to be discussed between the factions and Egyptian intelligence are the integration of the Hamas and Islamic Jihad extremist groups into PLO institutions and the holding of general elections in the Palestinian Authority.

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