Haniyeh: Egypt to renew Palestinian reconciliation talks

Hamas and Fatah to meet in Cairo in near future; Kassam rocket lands in Negev despite promise to maintain ceasefire; no injuries.

January 17, 2011 11:08
1 minute read.
A view of the Gaza skyline

gaza strip view skyline 311. (photo credit: AP)


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Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh on Sunday told a group of Kuwaiti journalists that Egypt was expected to invite Hamas and rival Palestinian faction Fatah for renewed reconciliation talks soon, Palestinian news agency Ma'an reported.

Haniyeh said he was notified by Egyptian intelligence chief Omar Suleiman that the parties would be invited to Cairo in the near future, according to the report.

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Zahar: cease-fire enforced after IDF operation warning
Haniyeh orders quiet on Gazan border

The announcement comes after Haniyeh had instructed his security forces last week to enforce the ceasefire and calm along the Gaza-Israeli border. The Hamas prime minister also phoned Suleiman in Cairo to reiterate the Gaza Strip's ruling faction's intention to maintain the unofficial truce with Israel.

During a strategical meeting last Wednesday between Hamas and other Palestinian groups, Haniyeh had praised the Palestinian groups for agreeing to stop attacks on Israel, saying the reason was "so as not to give Israel an excuse to wage a new aggression."

On Sunday, Hamas Foreign Minister Mahmoud al-Zahar revealed that his movement’s recent decision to enforce a cease-fire with Israel came after Egypt warned that Israel was planning a military operation in the Gaza Strip. Zahar said Hamas also received warnings from other “international parties,” but did not elaborate.

“Egypt and international parties warned Hamas that the Israeli occupation was planning to launch a new aggression against the Gaza Strip,” he said. “Hamas and the other resistance groups are prepared for such an aggression.”

A Kassam rocket fired from the northern Gaza Strip landed in an open field in the Sha'ar Hanegev regional council Monday morning.

No injuries or damage was reported.

On Sunday, three mortar shells were fired into the regional council.

Khaled Abu Toameh contributed to this report.

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