Hamas, Fatah Prep for Possible Power Transfer in Gaza

Ismail Haniyeh
AP/Vahid Salemi

TEL AVIV –Hamas and Fatah are continuing to prepare for the possibility of a reconciliation deal that could see the Hamas terrorist group ostensibly hand over of power in the Gaza Strip to the government of the Palestinian Authority led by Fatah, the movement of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas.

According to Palestinian media, Hamas politburo chief Ismail Haniyeh and Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah spoke by telephone and discussed Hamdallah’s upcoming visit to the Gaza Strip together with officials and ministers from his government scheduled to take place on Monday.

According to Palestinian media, Haniyeh told Hamdallah that Hamas ordered its people and secretaries to ease the work of the Palestinian Authority delegation. Also according to the reports in Palestinian media, the two sides decided to establish teams with one having the complex task of finding a solution for tens of thousands of Palestinians working for the Hamas government.

In addition to government ministers, many Palestinian Authority officers are also expected to escort Hamdallah in a convoy of no less than 50 4X4 vehicles that will travel from Ramallah to the Gaza Strip, according to Palestinian reports.

As part of the Arab media’s extensive coverage of the issue of internal Palestinian reconciliation, the newspaper Al Quds Al Arabiya, published in London, reported that the delegation of the Palestinian Authority will be divided between two large hotels in Gaza ahead of the first weekly meeting of the Palestinian Authority to be held in the Strip in over a decade, as well as a meeting that will take place in Haniyeh’s home between members of the delegation and Hamas leaders.

Hamas leaders announced that they will do everything possible to insure the success of the Palestinian Authority delegation’s work and that they expect to establish a special Palestinian leadership.

“We want to be partners to the decision of peace and also on the decision of war, as long as all the clauses of the reconciliation are realized,” said Sami Khater, a member of Hamas’ politburo who suggested that not all of the conflicting issues had been hashed out.

On this topic, Hussein al-Sheikh, a member of Fatah’s central committee, said that the governmental delegation scheduled to arrive in Gaza won’t discuss issues that are in dispute, but that they will be discussed during bilateral meetings between Fatah and Hamas.


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