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Thursday, April 17, 2014  

Hamas must respect PLO deals: Abbas
OSLO/ISMAILIA Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said on Tuesday any coalition government between Fatah and Hamas must respect agreements signed by the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO).

In Ismailia, Egypt, leading Hamas member Mahmoud Zahar criticised the United States, saying that some US-backed Palestinian officials were obstructing the dialogue due to open between Palestinian groups in Cairo on Wednesday.

A Hamas delegation led by deputy politburo head Moussa Abu Marzouk would attend reconciliation conference.

Abbas during a visit to Oslo, the Norwegian capital, said: “We want to see the formation of a Palestinian national unity government or a government of national consensus — it doesn’t matter, as long as we agree upon a government.”

“This government must fully honour the commitments that we agreed to in the PLO,” he said, adding: “When governments come, they respect and honour and accept obligations of previous governments.”

The Hamas team will hold bilateral meetings with Abbas’s Fatah faction ahead of the conference involving 13 Palestinian organisations, a Hamas official said.

Zahar in an interview in the Egyptian town of Ismailia, said: “There are people who want this dialogue not to take place because they will lose their positions and their privileges.”

Zahar, who was Palestinian foreign minister in the Hamas government, said US intervention was behind the tension. “There are US (intelligence) agencies working in the Occupied West Bank,” he added. Zahar declined to give any commitment that Hamas would cooperate with US and Israeli attempts to stop the movement receiving money and weapons from abroad.

“It’s our right to bring in everything — money and arms. We will not give anyone any commitment on this subject,” he said.

Israeli authorities in Occupied Jerusalem said they had no immediate plans to demolish scores of Arab homes in the east of the city but that they had designated the area for a park. Palestinians said the Israeli-controlled municipality of Occupied Jerus-alem was preparing to evict 1,500 Palestinians and demolish 88 homes in Occupied East Jerusalem’s Silwan district, to convert it into an open public space.

City officials said there were no immediate plans to evict Palestinians from Silwan or demolish any homes, but the Israeli mayor of Occupied Jerusalem, Nir Barkat, confirmed in a statement the area was scheduled for use as a recreational area.

Agencies
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