Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and Hamas Politburo Chief Khaled Meshaal met in Doha on Thursday in an effort to revive reconciliation talks.
Qatari Foreign Minister Muhammed Abdel Rahman al-Thani hosted the two rival leaders in addition to Gaza-based Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh and top PLO official Saeb Erekat for a “working lunch,” a summary of the meeting in Wafa, the official PA news site, stated.
The two leaders concurred that they must end the division, noting that “reconciliation is the primary pathway to protect the national Palestinian project and confront the Israeli government plans, which seek to destroy the two-state option.”
Hamas and Fatah have tried to achieve reconciliation multiple times over the past ten years, but every attempt including the last round of talks in Doha in June 2016 has failed.
The 81-year-old Abbas and Doha-based Meshaal also rejected the idea of a statelet in the Gaza Strip. “They stressed that there will be no Palestinian state in Gaza and that there is no Palestinian state without the Gaza Strip,” the Wafa summary said.
Abbas and Meshaal last met in May 2014 in Doha.