World Bulletin / News Desk
Within the context of its new initiative, Hamas has voiced its readiness to dissolve an “administrative committee” it established in March tasked with coordinating between Gaza’s public institutions.
Since the committee’s establishment, the Ramallah-based Palestinian Authority (PA) of President Mahmoud Abbas, led by rival Palestinian faction Fatah (which is also headed by Abbas), has repeatedly called for its dissolution.
In a Wednesday statement, Salah al-Bardawil, a member of Hamas’s influential political bureau, promised that -- within the context of the new initiative -- the administrative committee “would end its emergency mission in Gaza immediately after the [Fatah-led] unity government assumes its responsibilities in the Gaza Strip”.
Al-Bardawil went on to explain that Hamas’s renewed push for inter-Palestinian rapprochement had come in response “to the voices of the Palestinian masses who revolted in Jerusalem and won the Battle of the Al-Aqsa Gates”.
In mid-July, Israel imposed a raft of draconian security measures in and around East Jerusalem’s Al-Aqsa Mosque complex after two Israeli police officers were killed in the area, allegedly by Palestinian attackers.
Palestinians responded to the measures by staging demonstrations throughout the Palestinian territories and refusing to enter the mosque complex in Jerusalem.
For 15 days, Palestinian Muslims prayed en masse outside the gates of the holy site in a move that drew widespread media attention.
Embarrassed by the wave of peaceful protests and facing mounting international criticism, Israel cancelled the security measures last Friday in a move hailed by Palestinians as a rare victory.
Hamas, for its part, seized the opportunity posed by the rare show of Palestinian national unity to launch a fresh effort to mend fences with Fatah and forge a unified front against Israel’s decades-long occupation.
“Hamas extends its hand [to Fatah] with a view to achieving Palestinian reconciliation on a clear and robust basis,” al-Bardawil said.
He also called on the Ramallah-based government to reverse “all measures imposed against Gaza since the administrative committee’s establishment” in March.
In April, Abbas vowed to take “unprecedented steps” in regards to the Gaza Strip, which has been governed by Hamas since 2007, when the resistance group wrested it from Fatah after several days of street fighting.
In recent months, Abbas appears to have made good on his threat, with the Ramallah government cutting the salaries of all PA employees based in Gaza by some 30 percent.
The Ramallah-based PA has also reduced the amount it pays Israel for the provision of roughly 10 percent of Gaza’s electricity needs, exacerbating the coastal strip’s already-chronic energy shortfall.
In hopes of averting further escalations and presenting Israel -- its primary foe -- with a united Palestinian front, al-Bardawil voiced Hamas’s desire for the resumption of Palestinian national dialogue with a view to forming a bona fide government of national unity.
He concluded by calling on Palestine’s myriad political groups to agree on dates for holding legislative, presidential and Palestinian National Council elections.
In 2014, Hamas and Fatah -- which govern the blockaded Gaza Strip and the Israeli-occupied West Bank respectively -- agreed in principle to establish a national unity government.
The so-called “unity government” later set up in Ramallah, however, has largely failed to assume any governing role in Gaza due to outstanding ideological differences between the two factions.
John Bolton led Gatestone Institute from 2013 until he took his White House position earlier this month
Attack ‘not part of a wider plot and there is no threat to national security’, says public safety minister
That vote, scheduled to take place at about 5:00 pm (2100 GMT), would not end the nomination, but would put a negative recommendation in the hands of the closely-divided full Senate -- where his approval is not guaranteed.
The company said in a message to customers that the attack was detected on January 14, at a time when the app had 14 million users in the Middle East, North Africa, Pakistan and Turkey, according to the economic news website Arabian Business.
We hope everyone remains fully committed to implementation and long-term preservation, says UN under-secretary-general
Obama, who met with Mandela in 2005 and who made an emotional address at his funeral, will speak at the lecture marking 100 years since the anti-apartheid icon was born.
A total of 41 Gazans have been martyred by Israeli gunfire since March 30
On Thursday, Iraqi F-16 fighter jets struck ISIL positions in Syria
On Thursday, Iraqi F-16 fighter jets struck ISIL locations in neighboring Syria
Turkish Historical Society head cites research from past wars
Palestinian president stresses on 2-state solution to conflict, calls East Jerusalem capital
Israeli snipers have killed 39 protesters and injured thousands who posed no threat, says Swiss-based group
Foreign Minister Cavusoglu to address UN General Assembly on Turkey’s contributions, approach to UN efforts
At least 39 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli gunfire near Gaza border
Serbia's ambassador to Ankara says 5 government ministers will accompany Serbian president