Thursday, 18 June 2015

Palestinian factions meet, Hamas denies Israel talks


GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- The Hamas movement has denied that it reached a long-term agreement with Israel, member of the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine’s politburo said Wednesday.

Saleh Zeidan’s statement came after a Palestinian faction meeting that included the Hamas movement, the DFLP, PFLP, Islamic Jihad and the PPP in the Gaza Strip on Wednesday.

Zeidan added that Hamas must issue an official statement affirming its denial.

He warned that any unilateral long-term agreements between Hamas and Israel would have "dangerous consequences" and would be to the benefit of an Israeli plan to separate the Gaza Strip from the Palestinian national project.

Zeidan added that the DFLP backs forming a national consensus government that would include all factions, including Hamas, calling upon the president to hold an immediate meeting to form a national unity government.

Hamas sources said Tuesday that Israel and the movement have been holding an indirect exchange about ideas for cementing a long-term truce in the Gaza Strip.

The exchanges have gone through a number of Arab and European channels in a bid to firm up a ceasefire agreement that took hold last August, ending a 50-day war in Gaza.

"There has been indirect contact between Israel and Hamas, messages passed via Arab channels as well as through European and Turkish sources," one of the sources told AFP, describing it as "an indirect exchange of ideas."

The contacts were confirmed by an Israeli source. more