Hamas politburo chief Khaled Mashaal
Photo: AP
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas
Photo: Reuters
Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu
Photo: Reuters

Report: Abbas refused to meet Mashaal

Senior Palestinian source claims Abbas refused to meet Hamas's politburo chief in Turkey to discuss reconciliation

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas declined Hamas' offer Thursday to meet with their politburo chief Khaled Mashaal in Turkey to discuss a reconciliation between Fatah and Hamas. This according to an interview with a senior Palestinian source published in the Egyptian newspaper Al-Ahram.


The Palestinian source claimed the meeting in Turkey was proposed to Abbas via a Turkish mediator.


Turkish newspaper Hurriyet reported Wednesday that Mashaal met with Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu, who visited Syria. According to reports, the two discussed the ongoing reconciliation efforts between Hamas and Fatah.


Al-Ahram reported the Hamas proposal included their willingness to hold elections to the Palestinian parliament and National Council. However Hamas suggested postponing the presidential elections to a later date.


Abbas rejected Hamas' proposal explaining he believes postponing presidential elections will cause those opposing a dialogue to declare him an illegal president, thereby compromising his ability to represent the Palestinian Authority in reconciliation talks.


Hamas further suggested that Gaza Strip authorities be accountable for Hamas, while the West Bank authorities take responsibility for Fatah. Hamas also announced it would agree to postpone the Palestine Liberation Organization's reorganization until the parliament elections.


The Palestinian source claimed Abbas, currently visiting Egypt, had said the meeting with Mashaal in Turkey will be considered a move which nullifies the Egyptian document of understanding between Hamas and Fatah formed during former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak's regime.


Nevertheless, Hamas said the Istanbul meeting will not overshadow Egypt's crucial role, where they wish the final agreement to be signed.


Turkey: Committed to reconciliation

Meanwhile, Hurriyet online reported Davutoglu ended the unexpected meeting by saying "both movements are obligated to work together to bring reconciliation and unity." He emphasized the Turkish commitment to promote peace among Palestinians via direct negotiations.


Turkish officials met with a number of Fatah representatives in Ankara who stressed Abbas would be willing to take steps to promote unity among the Palestinian factions.


The Sana news agency in Syria further reported the Turkish minister had met with President Bashar Assad to discuss the new reforms announced by the Syrian leadership.


Elior Levy contributed to the report



פרסום ראשון: 04.07.11, 12:42
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