Skip To Content
JEWISH. INDEPENDENT. NONPROFIT.

Support the Forward

Funded by readers like you DonateSubscribe
Breaking News

U.S. ‘Disappointed’ by Palestinian Unity Deal

The United States said on Wednesday it was disappointed by a unity pact agreed between the Gaza-based Islamist group Hamas and President Mahmoud Abbas’ Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) and said it could seriously complicate peace efforts.

“The timing was troubling and we were certainly disappointed in the announcement,” State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki told a regular news briefing.

“This could seriously complicate our efforts. Not just our efforts but the efforts of the parties to extend their negotiations.”

Psaki said U.S. officials had expressed their concerns to the Palestinians.

“It’s hard to see how Israel can be expected to negotiate with a government that does not believe in its right to exist,” she said.

The Palestinian move, coming after a long line of failed efforts to reconcile after seven years of internal bickering, envisions a unity government within five weeks and national elections six months later.

Israel said after the announcement that Abbas had chosen Hamas over peace, and canceled a session of U.S.-brokered talks with the Palestinians that had been scheduled for Wednesday night in Jerusalem.

Israeli Channel 2 TV said Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu would convene an emergency session of his security cabinet on Thursday to discuss his response.

Along with the United States and the European Union, Israel views Hamas as a terrorist organization, and says Abbas’ efforts to unify with the group show he is not serious about extending the troubled negotiations.

The talks, aimed at ending its decades-old conflict with the Palestinians and establishing a Palestinian state in the West Bank and Gaza, are scheduled to end on April 29.

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.