Skip To Content

Support the Forward

Funded by readers like you DonateSubscribe
Breaking News

Abbas and Hamas Leader Push Unity Agenda

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal said they turned a “new page” in Palestinian unity after meeting in Cairo.

Thursday’s meeting was the first time the Palestinian leaders had met face to face since they signed a reconciliation deal in May.

The deal called for new elections in a year. Thursday’s meeting reportedly did not make progress toward implementing the deal.

“We want to assure our people and the Arab and Islamic world that we have turned a major new and real page in partnership on everything do to with the Palestinian nation,” Mashaal said, according to the French news agency, AFP.

“There are no differences between us now,” said Abbas.

Hamas has refused to recognize Israel, even as part of a Palestinian unity government.

On Wednesday, Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said Israel will not recognize a future Palestinian unity government, and will not transfer it tax funds collected for the Palestinian Authority, unless Hamas recognized Israel.

“Israel will not recognize it, will not negotiate with it, and will not transfer it even one dime,” Lieberman said.

Israel has been withholding about $100 million in tax payments collected on the Palestinians’ behalf since the Palestinians were accepted as a full member of UNESCO, the United Nations scientific and cultural agency, and is continuing to withhold them over Fatah-Hamas unity talks.

Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.