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Syria-based factions convene in Damascus

Aug. 8, 2010 10:10 A.M. (Updated: Aug. 9, 2010 4:00 P.M.)
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) – Palestinian opposition factions including Hamas and Islamic Jihad convened Saturday in Damascus, where the Syria-based movements reiterated their objection to any kind of talks with Israel.

Faction leaders, including Hamas leader in exile Khalid Mash'al, warned in a statement the "serious outcomes of these negotiations [with Israel]" and vowed to take measures to thwart talks.

"The Palestinian Authority’s negotiation team in Ramallah is not authorized to negotiate as they do not represent the Palestinian people’s will," the statement added.

The opposition movements highlighted the need to bring about an end to Palestinian rivalry based on Palestinian rights, including the right to resistance and to reject all attempts "to blackmail resistance forces under the banner of reconciliation."

They called for more "dedicated efforts" to break the blockade of Gaza and to face Israel's settlement policy, home demolitions, and the illegal annexation of Palestinian land.
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