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Fatah delegation to visit Cairo to help resolve split with Hamas

Le président palestinien Mahmoud Abbas (c) lors d'un congrès de son parti, le Fatah, le 29 novembre 2016 à Ramallah
Tension between Hamas and Fatah have run high in recent months

A Fatah delegation will visit Cairo within the coming days in order to help resolve the Fatah-Hamas conflict, dividing Palestinian leadership, sources told i24NEWS on Tuesday.

A member of Fatah’s central committee, Fatah Commissioner of National Affairs and Fatah Central Committee member Azzam al-Ahmad, welcomed the ongoing efforts on the part of the Egyptian government, to end the Palestinian factional dispute.

Fatah, the largest faction in the Palestine Liberation Organization, is recognized by Israel and some 100 countries as the sole representative of the Palestinian people. Hamas's formation in March of an "administrative committee" was criticized by the Palestinian Authority (PA) – the PLO-linked body that administrates much of the West Bank – as an attempt to create a rival government and scuttle moves towards a unity government that would also have authority over the Gaza Strip, currently ruled by Hamas.

Tensions between Hamas and the PA have run high in recent months, with the latter deciding in April to stop paying Israel for electricity supplies sent to Gaza. Last month the PA suspended plans to force more than 6,000 of its employees in Gaza into early retirement, which was criticized as an attempt to pressure Hamas. Many of the workers were in the health and education ministries, and aid officials voiced concern about the implications for Gaza's two million inhabitants.

Hamas leader Ismail Haniya told Egyptian officials that he would disband his group's "administration committee" if it helped advance reconciliation with the rival Palestinian faction Fatah, an official with the militant Islamist group told AFP Tuesday.

AFP contributed to this report



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