Cairo Launches New Round of Palestinian Reconciliation Process

Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah (left) shakes hands with Hamas chief Ismail Haniyeh in Gaza on October 2

Egypt has resumed its efforts to complete the Palestinian reconciliation between Fatah and Hamas following stalemate and delay by both sides to implement an agreement signed in October.

A security delegation from the Egyptian intelligence service arrived in the Gaza Strip on Sunday afternoon, headed by chief of the Palestinian file in the intelligence body General Sameh Nabil, along with the Egyptian Consul General in Ramallah Khaled Sami and Brigadier Abdel Hadi Faraj. The delegation entered Gaza through Beit Hanoun crossing, which is controlled by Israeli forces.

Egypt had informed Fatah and Hamas that it would send the delegation to Gaza as a step to confirm its commitment to proceed with the reconciliation. The delegation will follow up the steps that will be taken by the two sides in order to enable the government to perform its duties and to resolve the rest of the pending files.

Sources told Asharq Al-Awsat that the Egyptian delegation met with the Telecommunications Minister in the Consensus Government, Samih Tabila, to discuss obstacles preventing him from fully assuming his work in Gaza, in addition to other matters related to plans to accommodate old employees.

Egyptian intelligence officials will also hold a series of meetings with representatives from the government of consensus in the coming days to talk over the need to enable the government to perform its functions and implement the decisions taken by the relevant officials.

According to the sources who spoke to Asharq Al-Awsat, the Hamas delegation, which is present in Cairo since more than ten days, reiterated the movement’s readiness to provide the necessary facilitations for the government to carry out its duties without obstacles, stressing at the same time, the need for the government to resolve the crises accumulated in recent months, and work on the integration of employees.

Fatah, for its part, did not comment on the new developments regarding the reconciliation process, but Azzam al-Ahmad, head of the movement’s reconciliation delegation, underlined the Palestinian Authority’s determination to move forward to implement the Cairo agreement, despite stalling by Hamas in this matter, as he said.

(Source / 26.02.2018)

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