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Hamas: Fatah prefers US dollars to national agreements

March 19, 2012 9:20 P.M. (Updated: March 20, 2012 1:19 P.M.)
GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- Fatah has not implemented any of its reconciliation commitments because it prefers American money to national agreements, a spokesman for the Hamas-led government in Gaza said Monday.

Taher al-Nunu said in a statement that Fatah is trying to destroy the reconciliation agreement it signed with Hamas last May.

Al-Nunu's remarks were made in response to comments by senior Fatah official Azzam al-Ahmad, who said Hamas was responsible for the ongoing delay in forming a unity government.

During a meeting with Egyptian officials in Cairo on Monday, al-Ahmad said Hamas asked to postpone the new administration for two weeks. More than a fortnight has passed and Fatah is still waiting for a response from Hamas, al-Ahmad said.

Al-Ahmad added that Hamas was hindering the new government by refusing to allow the central elections committee to work in Gaza.

Al-Nunu said al-Ahmad's remarks were intended to destroy the reconciliation process so Fatah could avoid its commitments under the unity agreement.

Fatah and Hamas agreed last May to form one government to end years of division during which rival administrations have governed the West Bank and Gaza.

Since the deal was signed, the factions have traded blame for the ongoing delay in forming the new government.

Fatah leader and President Mahmoud Abbas and Hamas chief Khalid Mashaal -- who leads the party from exile -- met in Doha in February and pledged to form the new government, agreeing that Abbas would take the post of prime minister.

The appointment prompted another row, as Hamas officials in Gaza questioned the legality of Abbas' appointment as prime minister.

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