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Fatah agrees to unity government
Fatah leaders have given Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestinian president, the go-ahead to form a national unity government with Hamas.
Last Modified: 26 Aug 2006 10:26 GMT
Abbas hopes Hamas will moderate its stance on Israel
Fatah leaders have given Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestinian president, the go-ahead to form a national unity government with Hamas.

At the end of a meeting of the party's central committee in the Jordanian capital, Amman, on Saturday, Nabil Shaath, a close Abbas aide, said the formation of the new government would not be subject to any conditions or demands on Israel.

Shaath and other members had been critical of Hamas's condition that Israel first release Palestinian political detainees

"When they set conditions that can only be implemented by Israel, it seems as if they give Israel the right to form or reject the government."

Abbas believes that forming a coalition will force Hamas to moderate its anti-Israel stance and help open the way for the renewal of broader peace talks.

No conditions
 
Ismail Haniya, the Palestinian prime minister and senior member of Hamas, denied that either his Islamist party or Fatah were beholden to conditions. 
 
"We are still at the beginning of holding negotiations. Neither Hamas nor Fatah has conditions. All sides support the idea of forming a national unity government."

Abbas Zaki, a member of Fatah's central committee, welcomed Haniya's announcement.

"We, and all Palestinian forces, want the so-called Hamas-Fatah conflict to end in a unified Palestinian stance," he said.
 
"We want to convince the world that we deserve to live and establish our state, while Israel, which continues launching attacks, would not find any Palestinian contradiction to take advantage of."

Source:
Aljazeera + Agencies
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