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Fatah Vice Chairman Accuses Hamas of Failing to Respond to Calls for Unity | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Participants in the Fatah congress in Ramallah clap and cheer before a speech by Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas.. (photo credit: REUTERS)

Ramallah– Fatah Vice Chairman and member of its central committee, Mahmoud al-Aloul, said that his movement was determined to achieve national unity, but Hamas has failed to respond to calls by the Palestinian Authority.

During a meeting with journalists and opinion writers in the Gaza Strip, through a video conference on Thursday, Aloul said: “we say to Hamas movement, let us unite our ranks in order to face the occupation together, as the Strip cannot be separated from Palestine.”

Aloul called on Hamas to dissolve the administrative committee as a first priority.

“The president made an appeal to Hamas for al-Aqsa Mosque and for our people.”

“This was an opportunity, but the movement’s reaction was disappointing. We say this opportunity still exist and we are determined to achieve national unity,” he told his audience.

The Palestinian official accused Hamas of deepening divisions, through its decision to form the administrative committee to run the Gaza Strip.

He stressed that the Palestinian president’s measures against Hamas would continue until the complete dissolving of the committee.

Aloul was referring to a series of measures adopted by Abbas against Gaza including the suspension of salaries of state employees and the halting of payment of electricity and fuel bills, as well as the cancellation of tax exemptions.

Abbas said that these measures would escalate until Hamas “dissolves its administrative committee, recognizes the government of national unity and accepts to hold general elections.”

Aloul, for his part, stressed that the PA measures were not targeted against Gaza residents, saying: “Actions undertaken by Hamas have divided the country into two parts, run by two administrations, and a large part of the measures we declare against the Gaza Strip have not been implemented.”