Egypt to Palestinian factions: Unity deal by Saturday

March 12, 2009 10:51

Egyptian moderators want a power-sharing agreement between the various Palestinian factions by Saturday, a participant in the talks in Cairo said on Thursday. Negotiator Samir Ghosheh, a member of one of the smaller factions, said that he and his colleagues were told by Egypt that they need to produce an agreement by Saturday. An accord is seen as essential for financing reconstruction in Gaza. Hamas and Fatah are still apart on the composition of a unity government. The Islamic militant Hamas rules Gaza. Fatah's leader, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, controls the West Bank. In Cairo, Wasil Abu Youssef of the Palestine Liberation Front said the talks would be wrapped up by the end of the month, and agreement in several areas would be completed within two days. However, key issues remained open, including the political program of the government, term of the president and elections.

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