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Official: Fatah invited Hamas to meeting about national unity

Sept. 3, 2014 8:17 A.M. (Updated: Sept. 6, 2014 11:57 A.M.)
GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- A representative of the Palestinian political movement Fatah on Wednesday said the group has invited Hamas to a meeting to discuss the implementation of the national reconciliation agreement and were still waiting for a response.

Senior Gaza-based Fatah leader Faisal Abu Shahla told Ma'an that Fatah had already formed a delegation based on central committee members and had asked Hamas to form a delegation "authorized to take decisions" in order to take part in a meeting outside of Palestine.

The two delegations, he said, would meet and discuss unresolved issues and arrangements related to the reconciliation agreement the two movements signed in April that ended eight years of tensions.

The meeting will be dedicated, Abu Shahla said, to "crystallizing a clear attitude toward the Palestinian national consensus government" that would enable it to operate without obstacles or intervention from any side.

"Agreement will be reached on a political program equal to the sacrifices that the Palestinian people have made during the aggression on the Gaza Strip," he added.

Critics say Israel has repeatedly sought to undermine the April 23 national unity deal between PLO and Hamas including through a massive arrest campaign targeting Hamas members across the West Bank over summer as well as the 50-day assault on Gaza that killed more than 2,000.

Palestinian officials, however, have stressed the need for national unity in the face of these attacks and stressed that Palestinian political leaders would remain committed to reconciliation despite the threats.
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