Hamas-Fatah Meeting Canceled, in Major Setback to Palestinian Unity

Officials from Hamas and Fatah acknowledge that there are still disagreements over who the prime minister will be for the new unity government.

Send in e-mailSend in e-mail

Palestinian officials say a high-profile meeting between the leaders of the rival Fatah and Hamas movements has been called off.

Tuesday's meeting between Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Hamas leader Khaled Meshal had been expected to name the prime minister over an emerging reconciliation government.

In this photo released by the Hamas Media Office, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas shakes hands with Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal Cairo, Egypt on May 4, 2011.Credit: AP

But officials from both sides acknowledge there are still disagreements over who the prime minister will be. They say the meeting has been postponed indefinitely.

The officials spoke Sunday on condition of anonymity pending a formal announcement.

The decision is a setback to last month's unity deal between Hamas and Fatah. At that time, they pledged to end a four-year rift that has left the Palestinians with rival governments in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

Reconciliation is essential for the Palestinians to fulfill their goal of establishing an independent state in the two areas, which lie on opposite sides of Israel.

The two factions have been divided over how to deal with Israel. Fatah favors peace with Israel, while Hamas has rejected international demands to renounce violence and recognize Israel's right to exist.

Comments

SUBSCRIBERS JOIN THE CONVERSATION FASTER

Automatic approval of subscriber comments.
From $1 for the first month

SUBSCRIBE
Already signed up? LOG IN

ICYMI

The Orion nebula, photographed in 2009 by the Spitzer Telescope.

What if the Big Bang Never Actually Happened?

Relatives mourn during the funeral of four teenage Palestinians from the Nijm family killed by an errant rocket in Jabalya in the northern Gaza Strip, August 7.

Why Palestinian Islamic Jihad Rockets Kill So Many Palestinians

בן גוריון

'Strangers in My House': Letters Expelled Palestinian Sent Ben-Gurion in 1948, Revealed

AIPAC

AIPAC vs. American Jews: The Toxic Victories of the 'pro-Israel' Lobby

Bosnian Foreign Minister Bisera Turkovic speaks during a press conference in Sarajevo, Bosnia in May.

‘This Is Crazy’: Israeli Embassy Memo Stirs Political Storm in the Balkans

Hamas militants take part in a military parade in Gaza.

Israel Rewards Hamas for Its Restraint During Gaza Op