Hamas launches official government Web site

Spokesman: "Hamas brings its voice to everyone, rejecting the authority of the West Bank gov't."

PA website 224.88 (photo credit: )
PA website 224.88
(photo credit: )
Though the breakup was bloody and public more than two months ago, the Palestinian unity government with the Islamic Hamas and secular Fatah is alive and well - at least on the Internet. The deposed Hamas-led government launched a Web site for the national unity coalition on Monday, despite its demise on the ground. The Hamas Cabinet has refused to step down, though Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas of Fatah fired it after the Hamas takeover of Gaza and appointed an emergency government, based in the West Bank city of Ramallah. That leaves the deposed Hamas regime still in power in Gaza. "Welcome to the official site of the Palestinian Cabinet," reads a message on the Web site. "This electronic Web site is a window to the Palestinian government and Palestine." Explaining the decision to launch the site, spokesman Taher Nunu said, "We are bringing our voice to everybody," rejecting the authority of the West Bank government. "Its decisions are not legitimate," he said. The home page of the Web site shows a picture of deposed Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh, collaged with the late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat, an iconic leader for Palestinians. There was no mention or picture of Abbas. Arafat and Abbas are closely identified with Fatah. In a challenge to the Ramallah government decision, the Web site features a copy of the Palestinian official newspaper, which publishes laws and presidential decrees, but this one only featuring decisions signed by the deposed Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh and localities under Hamas control. Ibrahim Ibrach, the culture minister in the Ramallah government, said the Web site launching is another step to reinforce the separation between Gaza and the West Bank, and shows that Hamas is not interested in reconciliation. "The deposed government can't call itself a national unity government," he said. "This is telling of Hamas's aims and course: that it really wants and accepts an authority for itself ... even a state in Gaza only." http://www.pmo.gov.ps/news.php