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Cairo Renews Efforts to Save Reconciliation amid Fatah-Hamas Disputes

Cairo Renews Efforts to Save Reconciliation amid Fatah-Hamas Disputes

Tuesday, 26 December, 2017 - 11:30
Head of the Hamas delegation Saleh Arouri and Fatah leader Azzam al-Ahmed sign a reconciliation deal in Cairo, Egypt, October 12, 2017. (Reuters)

Palestinian sources revealed that great efforts were underway by Egypt to try to salvage the reconciliation between Fatah and Hamas amid renewed disputes between the two parties on the empowerment of the government in the Gaza Strip.

The two parties are also in disagreement over the file of employees of the former Hamas government and the payment of salaries in accordance to the agreement reached in October in the Egyptian capital, Cairo.

The sources told Asharq Al-Awsat that Egyptian intelligence officers were holding separate contacts with the leaders of Hamas and with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Azzam al-Ahmed, the head of the reconciliation file in the Fatah Movement.

The sources noted that the Egyptian side has assured the parties that they would continue to exert efforts to reach a solution that would end the current impasse, adding that Egypt intends to invite officials from Fatah and Hamas to Cairo again to discuss these differences and reach radical solutions.

Hamas is asking Fatah and the National Accord Government to abide by the agreement reached over the salaries of the employees, while Fatah is calling for the empowerment of its government in Gaza. It accuses the government bodies affiliated with Hamas of obstructing the functions of ministers and refusing to implement their decisions.

Sources told Asharq Al-Awsat that contacts were underway with Arab and foreign countries in an attempt to secure payments to Hamas employees, as was done in 2014 following a reconciliation agreement at the time.

The Egyptian efforts come days after statements by Yehya al-Sinwar, the leader of Hamas movement in Gaza, in which he said that the reconciliation agreement was collapsing because of other projects aimed at liquidating the Palestinian cause and the weapons of resistance.

He called on all Palestinians to protect the reconciliation and reject any other projects.

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