HAMAS LEADER Ismail Haniyeh gestures during a news conference in Gaza City earlier this month.
(photo credit: REUTERS)
In a rare phone call on Wednesday, Hamas Politburo Chairman Ismail Haniyeh and Jordanian King Abdullah discussed Palestinian reconciliation efforts.
“Haniyeh outlined the latest political developments with special emphasis on the reconciliation file, affirming that Hamas is serious about faithfully implementing agreements,” a readout of the phone call on Hamas’s official website said.
The phone call came some two weeks after Hamas and Fatah signed an Egyptian-brokered agreement to advance Palestinian reconciliation efforts and restore the Ramallah-based Palestinian Authority’s governing authority in the Gaza Strip.
Hamas has controlled Gaza since ousting the PA in 2007 from the territory.
Haniyeh, according to Hamas’s website, also told the Jordanian king that the territorial division of the West Bank and Gaza “is behind us, as this stage requires Palestinian unity.”
Haniyeh and Abdullah have not communicated in recent memory. Jordan and Hamas have had a rocky relationship since the Jordanian government closed Hamas’s offices in Amman and expelled its leaders in 1999.
Haniyeh and Abdullah’s phone call also took place after PA President Mahmoud Abbas and the Jordanian monarch met on Monday in Amman to discuss reconciliation efforts.
According to a report in Jordan’s official news agency Petra, Abdullah told Abbas that Palestinian reconciliation constitutes “an important step” toward relaunching peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians.
A report of Abdullah and Haniyeh’s telephone exchange in Petra said that the king congratulated the Hamas leader on the Egyptian-sponsored agreement and added that Jordan “fully supports its Palestinian brothers.”