PA adamant on unity with Hamas

Abbas spokesman says PA chairman insists on implementing the reconciliation agreement with Hamas.

Dalit Halevi ,

Mahmoud Abbas
Mahmoud Abbas

Nabil Abu Rudeineh, the official spokesman of Palestinian Authority (PA) chairman Mahmoud Abbas, on Tuesday rejected the conditions set by Israel for holding talks with the PA following the reconciliation agreement between Fatah and Hamas.

Abu Rudeineh stated that reconciliation is a supreme Palestinian interest and that Abbas supports the implementation of "the Palestinian people's aspiration for unity and independence."

"The Israeli response to the internal Palestinian reconciliation will not change the official position on this matter," the spokesman added, stressing that the international community, including the United States, welcomed the return of the PA to Gaza and the transfer of responsibility over the region to Fatah.

The Cabinet's statement earlier on Tuesday came in response to the Hamas-Fatah reconciliation agreement which was reached last week following 10 years of internal conflict.

The statement stressed that the Israeli government will not conduct diplomatic negotiations with a Palestinian government that includes Hamas.

It also made clear that negotiations will not resume until Hamas disarms, recognizes Israel and gives up violence.

Hamas earlier on Tuesday also rejected the Cabinet statement, with its spokesman Fawzi Barhoum saying that the organization would ignore such "blatant Zionist interventions in Palestinian issues."