PA President Abbas with Hamas PM Haniyeh 311 (R).
(photo credit: REUTERS/Suhaib Salem)
Hamas on Monday criticized Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’s
announcement that he has begun consultations to form a “national unity”
Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh said Abbas’s move would
undermine efforts to implement a reconciliation agreement between the Islamist
movement and Fatah.
The agreement, which was reached last year under the
auspices of Qatar, calls for the formation of a new Palestinian unity government
headed by Abbas. It also calls for holding new presidential and parliamentary
elections and solving security-related issues between the two rival
“The reconciliation accord should be implemented as a whole
package and not partially,” Haniyeh said of Abbas’s decision to move ahead with
plans to form a government.
“In addition to the formation of a new
government, there are security and social issues, as well as elections for the
presidency and parliament.”
Last Saturday, Abbas announced that he has
launched consultations with various Palestinian factions over the formation of a
new government following the resignation of Prime Minister Salam
Fayyad continues, meanwhile, to serve in his post as head of a
Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri denied that his
movement was part of the consultations over the formation of a new
Fatah, for its part, said that Hamas’s position showed that
the Islamist movement was not serious about the implementation of the
Qatari-sponsored reconciliation deal.
“Hamas seems to be very confused
and its leaders are issuing contradictory statements,” said Fayez Abu Aitah, a
Fatah spokesman in the West Bank. “Hamas is trying to avoid implementing the
In a related development, representatives of
several Palestinian groups in the Gaza Strip called Monday on all concerned
parties to work toward implementing the agreement.
“There is an urgent
need to end Palestinian divisions and restore unity,” the group representatives
said after meeting in Gaza City. They also called on the Egyptians to pursue
efforts to end the Hamas-Fatah dispute.