Fatah and Hamas said on Wednesday that they were close to reaching agreement on
the formation of a “national consensus” government that would be headed by
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas.
Nabil Sha’ath, a member of
the Fatah central committee, said that “real progress” has been achieved in the
past few days to end the power struggle with Hamas.
A Fatah delegation
headed by Azzam al-Ahmed has been holding intensive negotiations with Hamas
leaders in Cairo under the auspices of the Egyptian General Intelligence
Sha’ath said the two sides were very close to reaching agreement
on the formation of a government that would pave the way for holding
presidential and parliamentary elections in the Palestinian
He said that a meeting between Abbas and Hamas leader Khaled
Mashaal, which was supposed to take place in Cairo next week, has been postponed
until after the second round of the Egyptian presidential election this
Earlier this year, Hamas and Fatah signed an agreement in Doha,
Qatar, calling for the establishment of a national consensus government that
would be headed by Abbas. The new government, according to the accord, would
consist of independent figures and its main task would be to prepare for
Last month, Abbas asked Prime Minister Salam Fayyad to form a
new government in the West Bank.
It is not clear at this stage if Fayyad
would be part of the government, which, according to Palestinian sources, would
consist of 19 cabinet members.
Fatah legislator Ashraf Juma’ah said the
new government would be sworn in before Abbas in Ramallah. He did not specify
when the ceremony would take place.
He too confirmed that Fatah and Hamas
negotiators have made significant progress in the Cairo talks.
told the Ma’an News Agency that the Egyptians were playing a major role in
bridging the gap between the two rival parties.