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Haniyeh meets with Gaza factions to discuss national 'reconciliation'

Nov. 16, 2013 9:39 P.M. (Updated: Nov. 18, 2013 12:02 P.M.)
GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- Gaza Premier Ismael Haniyeh met with leaders of various political factions in Gaza on Saturday, with the absence of Fatah representatives.

Islamic Jihad leader Khaled al-Batsh said that the meeting was called for by Haniyeh to discuss pressing issues in the Gaza Strip, including the ongoing siege as well as potential reconciliation among Palestinian political factions.

Al-Batsh added that Haniyeh suggested forming a national committee to discuss the implementation of the 2012 Cairo and Doha agreements, both of which committed Hamas and Fatah to reconciliation and the setting up of a united national government. Neither were successfully implemented following their signing.

Haniyeh will meet factions again next week to form the committee and to find ways to implement the reconciliation, al-Batsh added.

DFLP leader Saleh Zeidan said that the meeting primarily focused on three issues: reconciliation, problems in Gaza, and relations with Egypt.

Haniyeh emphasized the importance of positive Palestinian relations with Egypt and all countries, and said that Hamas is a national movement that has no external dependency, Zeidan added.

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