Following increased tensions between the two main Palestinian factions, including the arrests of numerous Fatah loyalists in Gaza, a West Bank Fatah official said that “there will be no dialogue with Hamas,” The Jerusalem Post reported Wednesday.
Fatah, the faction headed by Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, has accused Hamas of arresting 500 of its members recently. Hamas, the terrorist organization that maintains complete political and military control over the Gaza Strip, countered saying that it only had summoned 38 Fatah members for questioning in its efforts to maintain security in Gaza.
Nonetheless, following the incident, Hussein al-Shiekh, a senior Fatah official in the West Bank said, “That’s it: There will be no dialogue with Hamas.”
“We have notified Egypt and Qatar that their efforts to achieve reconciliation [between Hamas and Fatah] have reached a dead end,” Sheikh added. He also accused Hamas of stealing funds dedicated to providing water and electricity to Gaza.
The recent decision of Abbas to dissolve the Palestinian Legislative Council, a majority of whose members are from Hamas, has exacerbated tensions between the two factions.
Last week, PA security forces prevented Aziz Dweik, a member of Hamas, who serves as the council’s speaker, from holding a press conference protesting Abbas’s decision. Last month, also, PA police prevented Hamas members in Hebron and Nablus from publicly celebrating the 31st anniversary of the terror group’s founding.
“Until recently, it appeared as if the Egyptians were on the verge of reaching another ‘historic’ reconciliation deal between Hamas and Fatah,” the Post reported. “The two parties have signed several reconciliation accords in the past 11 years, but none have been implemented.”
In October, Hamas official Ahmed Yousef wrote that the constant fighting between Hamas and Fatah has made the Palestinian people into “beggars.”
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