New PA cabinet leader to present government in coming days

Mohammad Shtayyeh's new cabinet will not include any supporters of Hamas, the longtime rival of Fatah.

Elad Benari ,

Mohammed Shtayyeh
Mohammed Shtayyeh
Flash 90

Mohammad Shtayyeh, who was recently appointed by Palestinian Authority (PA) chairman Mahmoud Abbas as the new head of the PA cabinet, will announce the make-up of his new government in the coming days, PA officials said Monday, according to AFP.

Shtayyeh has until April 14 to form a new government which is expected to exclude all supporters of Hamas, the longtime rival to the Fatah movement of Shtayyeh and Abbas.

Analysts say real decision-making power remains with 84-year-old Abbas, who has been in power since 2005.

Last week, Shtayyeh said his new government will be a government for all the Palestinians and will work on strengthening their steadfastness while facing the “political and financial wars” currently waged by the United State and the Israeli government against the Palestinian people.

Shtayyeh’s appointment came after the previous cabinet, led by Rami Hamdallah, resigned at the end of January.

Hamas and Islamic Jihad condemned Shtayyeh’s appointment and said that it contradicts the reconciliation agreement between the Palestinian factions.

Hamas and Fatah, embroiled in a bitter rivalry since 2007 when Hamas violently took over Gaza from Fatah in a bloody coup, signed a reconciliation deal in October of 2017 which later reportedly hit “obstacles” and has never been implemented.

PA officials said that five smaller factions will join Fatah in the new cabinet. Others, including the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) terrorist organization, refused to take part.

Shortly after being named cabinet leader, Shtayyeh said he would act "to establish an independent and sovereign Palestinian state with Jerusalem as its capital whose borders are the 1967 lines."

He stressed that the Palestinian struggle against Israel would continue with full force. "The Palestinian residents of Jerusalem are waging a struggle to protect the city from Judaization and to preserve it as an Arab Palestinian city. The struggle to preserve the narrative about the Al-Aqsa Mosque and the city of Jerusalem goes through strengthening the steadfastness of the Muslim and Christian residents of the city against the Jews."