'Egypt to send team for Hamas, Fatah reconciliation'

Yusef Rizka, political adviser to Haniyeh reportedly says meeting will be "of great value"; parties to meet in Hamas PM's Gaza home.

By JPOST.COM STAFF
January 16, 2012 20:05
1 minute read.
Mahmoud Abbas and Ismail Haniyeh

Haniyeh and Abbas waving 521. (photo credit: REUTERS)

Egypt is sending a delegation of officials to meet with Fatah and Hamas, political adviser to Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh, Yusef Rizka, said Monday, according to Al Jazeera.

In an official statement quoted by Al Jazeera, Rizqa said that the aim of the visit was to advance reconciliation between the two parties. He added that the visit would be "meaningful" and of "of great value," particularly regarding the issue of political prisoners.

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The meeting was reportedly slated to take place in Haniyeh's home in Gaza.

On Saturday, Hamas announced their decision to give back the villa belonging to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in Gaza City, in a bid to end the split between the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.

Hamas militiamen seized the villa during the 2007 coup they staged against the PA in the Gaza Strip. Abbas’s residence and other PA installations have since been occupied by Hamas officials and activists.

Hamas official Khalil al-Haya said that Abbas’s villa would be handed over to Fatah representatives in the Gaza Strip. He said the decision was taken following a meeting of Fatah and Hamas officials in Gaza City to discuss the implementation of last year's Egyptian-brokered reconciliation agreement between the two parties.



Khaled Abu Toameh contributed to this report


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