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Hamas official: We are waiting on Egypt, Abbas

Dec. 16, 2012 9:41 A.M. (Updated: Dec. 17, 2012 4:08 P.M.)
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- Senior Hamas official Ahmad Yousef said Sunday that his party was waiting for Egypt and Palestine's President Mahmoud Abbas to move reconciliation with Abbas' Fatah faction forward.

The first obstacle to national reconciliation is the instability in Egypt surrounding their constitutional referendum, which began on Saturday, he said.

Palestinian factions are waiting to be called to Cairo for a meeting, according to Yousef.

He said they are also waiting for Abbas to call a meeting of the PLO with the general-secretaries of all the Palestinian factions.

Yousef welcomed the celebration of Hamas' anniversary in the West Bank this week, for the first time since the parties split in 2007

The Fatah-dominated government in the West Bank allowed the festivals to go forward, and the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip reciprocated over Fatah's anniversary.

Yousef said the moves will strengthen relationships between Fatah and Hamas. He warned of a third intifada (uprising) in the West Bank due to Israeli policies.

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