Days of Palestine

Sunday, February 5

Abbas: any Hamas minister must recognise Israel

Days of Palestine -

Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud Abbas pledged to Israeli officials on Sunday that he will not have any Hamas official does not recognise Israel in potential unity government.

Abbas told a delegation of former Israeli lawmakers visiting his party’s Ramallah headquarters that “the Americans have assured him they will announce their support for a two-state solution soon,” Haaretz reported.

He also accused the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of preventing the resumption of Israeli-Palestinian peace talks.

“Netanyahu doesn’t want to renew the peace process, he thinks I’m going to stay here and guard the occupation,” Abbas told members of the Israeli delegation.

The group included former Labour chairman Amram Mitzna, former ministers Ophir Pines-Paz and Raleb Majadele, and former MKs Colette Avital and Taleb el-Sana.

Under a reconciliation agreement reached earlier this month between Hamas and Abbas’s Fatah party, the PA government is to reassume civilian control of Gaza by December 1.

In the wake of the agreement, Israel’s top-level security cabinet said the government would not hold peace talks with the PA unless Hamas renounces terrorism and recognises Israel.

White House Mideast peace envoy Jason Greenblatt echoed the demand, saying that any Palestinian government must adhere to certain “basic requirements,” namely renouncing violence and recognising Israel.

The US, the PA and Israel describe the Palestinian resistance as terror and demand that all the Palestinians, who were displaced from their homes, to recognise the state of Israel, which was built on the rubble of their homes and the skulls and bones of their fathers.