The Palestinian TV station al-Wattan TV said on Monday that the leaders of Fatah and Hamas had agreed on new prime minister, a Gazan businessman named Mamoun Abu Shahla. The news was also confirmed by the Raya Radio news network.
Mamoun Abu Shahla, reported to be the agreed choice for new Palestinian Prime Minister (al-Wattan TV Image).
Abu Shahla is an accountant and businessman born in Acre in 1943 and educated in Gaza, Egypt and the United states. He has worked between Palestine, Jordan, Egypt, Libya and United states for 22 years and holds a British passport. Abu Shahla, his wife and four children have lived in Gaza for five years.
Abu Shahla runs an infrastructure contracting company, a computers and information technology company, and a hospital supply company. He’s on the director’s board of the Bank of Palestine, al-Azhar University, the Atta Gaza society, the Palestinian Trade Center and Palestinian Telecommunications Company.
The news has not been confirmed by the Palestinian Authority.
Current Prime Minister Salam Fayyad has spoken of stepping down in the past week, saying he did not want to get in the way of Palestinian reconciliation. Hamas opposed his appointment in 2009 and has named it one of their red lines in creating a unity government with Mahmoud Abbas’ PA in the West Bank.
In response to news of potential Palestinian reconciliation, the cabinet of Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu decided to continue withholding the more than $100 million in Palestinian tax revenues that the PA collected in October. The move, which Israeli ministers have described as a form of punishment for Palestinian membership in UNESCO and application to other international bodies, prevents the payment of salaries to more than a million PA employees and their families.
(english.pnn.ps / 21.11.2011)