The Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah party intended to form a national unity government without the Hamas faction and Islamic Jihad movement, adding more tensions to the two long-term rival factions’ relations.
Late on Sunday, the central committee of the Fatah party recommended the formation of a new cabinet composed of Palestinian independent figures and members of the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO), according to Fatah’s statement.
The statement added that the party decided to form a committee of members from the Fatah’s central committee to start discussions and consultations over the cabinet with the PLO factions.
Furthermore, the committee renewed its commitment to the Cairo reconciliation agreement signed in 2017.
In response, Hamas said that Fatah’s upcoming cabinet would never be legislative if it did not include its members. “Such a government will never have political legitimacy,” read Hamas’s statement. Hamas described Fatah’s decision as “a prolongation of the mess that Fatah is practising lately.”
The current Palestinian government, headed by Rami Hamdallah, was formed in 2014 with the support of Fatah and Hamas factions.
In December last year, Abbas decided to dissolve the PA’s parliament, which is better known as the Palestinian Legislative Council. The council is dominated by his rival Hamas and called for conducting legislative elections within six months.
Since winning the elections in 2005, Hamas has controlled the PA’s parliament. However, the parliament’s missions were suspended in 2007 over the electoral dispute between the two Palestinian factions, Hamas and Fatah.
Egypt brokered several attempts to reach a reconciliation deal between the two faction rivals, aiming to end the Palestinian split. However, the talks did not succeed.