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Official: Abbas to convene PLO reform summit

Jan. 31, 2013 6:07 P.M. (Updated: Feb. 6, 2013 2:51 P.M.)
GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- An independent politician said Thursday that President Abbas will convene a summit of the PLO reform committee next Friday in Cairo.

The leadership of Hamas and Islamic Jihad will participate in the summit along with other parties, Yasser al-Wadiyeh, head of a coalition of independents, he said.

The committee to restructure the PLO was formed in the wake of a May 2011 reconciliation deal between Fatah and Hamas that was never implemented.

Hopes of reactivating the deal were raised when Abbas, the head of Fatah, met with Khalid Mashaal, chief of the rival Hamas faction, earlier this month.

Established in 1964, the PLO is the legal representative of Palestinians on the world stage, but has come under increasingly criticism for not being representative of the whole Palestinian polity.

Hamas and Islamic Jihad, not currently members of the body, have representatives on the reform committee.
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