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Gaza authorities prevent PLO official from leaving Gaza for Ramallah

May 30, 2017 1:35 P.M. (Updated: May 30, 2017 3:15 P.M.)
The Palestinian side of the Beit Hanoun crossing (File)
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- State-run Palestinian news agency Wafa reported on Tuesday that authorities in the Hamas-run Gaza Strip prevented senior Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) official Zakariya al-Agha from leaving the besieged coastal enclave to attend a PLO meeting in the occupied West Bank city of Ramallah “for the second time in a row.”

Al-Agha, from Khan Yunis in southern Gaza, has been a member of the Fatah Central Committee since 1994, and a member of the PLO Executive Committee since 1996.

He formerly served as the head of the PLO Department for Refugee Affairs and began serving as Fatah's General Commissioner of Mobilization and Organization in the Gaza Strip in 2015.

Fatah and Hamas have been embroiled in a bitter rivalry since Hamas' election victory in 2006 elections in the Gaza Strip, which erupted into a violent conflict between the two movements as both attempted to consolidate control over the territory.

Hamas has accused the PA of executing a plan to "eradicate" the movement from the West Bank, accusing Fatah of “escalating security collaboration” with the Israeli authorities through politically motivated arrests and “adopting a revolving door policy" funneling Palestinians from PA jails into Israeli prisons.

Officials from the Fatah-led PA have in turn criticized Hamas for creating a shadow government in the Gaza Strip and blocking efforts to reach political unity.
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