Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas - Reuters
CAIRO - 3 August 2017: Following the latest Israeli violations against the Palestinian worshippers at Jerusalem, both Hamas and Fatah have announced their readiness to reach reconciliation and form a unity government that failed three years ago.
Gaza-based Hamas Movement announced a seven-point reconciliation initiative with the Palestinian Authority, chaired by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Thursday.
Hamas initiative also included "preparing for legislative, presidential and national council elections and holding an immediate meeting of the PLO's (Palestinian Legislative Organization) provisional leadership framework for making binding national decisions for all."
“Hamas is extending its hand to the Palestinian reconciliation on clear, sound and in-depth bases," Hamas political bureau member, Salah al-Bardawil said in a statement received by Agence France Presse, calling for "immediate cancellation of all measures imposed on Gaza under the pretext of forming a state administrative committee."
In July, Hamas announced the administrative committee to run Gaza Strip.
Bardawil stressed "the immediate commencement of national dialogue and consultations to form a government of national unity and enable the Palestinian Legislative Council - which has not met since 2007, the year Hamas seized control of the Gaza Strip - by consensus to carry out its duties."
He announced that Hamas is ready to end the committee for its emergency mission as soon as the Unity Government of Palestine (national consensus government) resumes its responsibilities in the Gaza strip.
Hamas’ initiative came as a response to President Abbas’ call, in which he, last week, asked Hamas members to refrain from the government (state administrative committee) that they have formed to control the Gaza Strip in order to allow the national consensus government to carry out its tasks, and to agree to hold the presidential and legislative elections.
After forming the seven-member administrative committee in early July, West Bank-based government, presided by Rami al-Hamdallah, have fired thousands of Gaza employees in response. It also transferred more than 6,000 of its employees in the Gaza Strip to early retirement; this move came after the government stopped paying electricity bills to Israel in order to feed the people, leading to a reduction in the electricity supply.
However, Fatah spokesperson Osama al-Qawsmi said Thursday that Hamas’ initiative includes “incapacitating conditions” against the inter-Palestine reconciliation, Erem news reported. He added that dissolving Hamas’ governmental committee should be carried out unconditionally.
The inter-Palestine rift came after Hamas won the 2006 legislative elections. However, the international community refused to accept the Hamas government and demanded that the movement first renounce violence, recognize Israel and respect agreements between the Palestinians and Israeli leaders. The situation developed into Hamas being a separate entity and engaging in bloody clashes with the Abbas forces.
President Abbas's movement and Hamas signed a national reconciliation accord in April 2014, followed by the formation of a national consensus government. However, Hamas and Fatah failed to settle their differences and did not actively join the government.