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Shtayyeh Begins Consultations to Form Fatah-dominated Government

Shtayyeh Begins Consultations to Form Fatah-dominated Government

Tuesday, 12 March, 2019 - 13:45
Senior Fatah official Mohammed Shtayyeh gestures during a Palestinian leadership meeting in Ramallah, in the Israeli-occupied West Bank February 20, 2019 (Reuters).

Palestinian Prime Minister-designate Mohammed Shtayyeh started consultations on the formation of his new government with contacts within the Fatah movement.

The new government is expected to be significantly dominated by Fatah, with the participation of factions in the PLO and independents.

Well-informed sources told Asharq Al-Awsat that Shtayyeh would meet with his colleagues in the Central Committee for internal discussions and then meet PLO factions, civil society organizations and independents to form a political government within two weeks.

The Palestinian law grants the prime minister-designate two weeks to form his government. He may be granted another week, if he does not complete his task within the deadline.

Sources in the Fatah movement told Asharq Al-Awsat: “Fatah will form this government with those who attend, or more accurately, those among the Palestinian factions and the independents, who want to participate in the government that aims to face the challenges.”

The "Popular" and "Democratic" fronts are expected to boycott the government, while other factions such as the People’s Party, the Popular Struggle Front, the Palestine Liberation Front, the Arab Front, and the Fida Party will likely participate in the new cabinet.

Deputy-head of Fatah movement, Mahmoud al-Alloul, said that Shattiyeh began his contacts with all sides, stressing that the new government should be supported at this special and difficult period. He added that the government’s first task was to “withstand and meet all the current challenges.”

The new cabinet will be formed amid growing disagreements between Fatah and Hamas over government sponsorship of the Gaza Strip, in addition to a deepening financial crisis in light of a US decision to cut off funds and Israel’s retention of tax revenue funds after a dispute over a deduction of money paid by the PA to families of prisoners and fighters.

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