The incoming Palestinian Prime Minister, Ismail Haniyya, stated on Wednesday that the Palestinian Legislative Council will meet on Saturday to discuss and vote on the program of the new Palestinian government.
The March 25th cabinet session had been expected to take place after the Israeli general elections slated for March 28.

Also, Mahmoud Zahhar, Hamas, who is slated to be the foreign minister said that the movement agreed with the Palestinian President, Mahmoud Abbas, that the legislative council will meet on Saturday to discuss the government’s program and to vote on it.

The statements of Zahhar came after a meeting he held with Abbas for consultations regarding the formation of the new government.

Abbas said that members of the executive committee of the Palestinian Liberation Organization, PLO, had several notes on the program and formation of the upcoming government.

Meanwhile, Hamas rejected a call by the executive committee of the PLO to recognize the PLO as the sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people.

Hamas’ decision not to recognize the PLO as the sole representative is not expected to affect whether Abbas, who also heads a the PLO, would accept the Hamas-led government.

Yasser Abed-Rabbo, a PLO official said that the organization cannot deal with the platform of Hamas government or to accept it because, according to Abed Rabbo, the platform neglects the PLO which is the main achievement of the Palestinian People and their representative.

Abed Rabbo added that the PLO is unhappy that the Hamas program for the government did not address the plan of the acting Israeli Prime Minister, Ehud Olmert, to unilaterally draw Israel’s borders by 2010 if a peace deal was not reached with the Palestinians.

Also, PLO executive committee member, Taiseer Khaled, said that the executive committee cannot accept a program that does not recognize the PLO as the sole representative of the Palestinian People, and that it cannot accept a program that does not accept the Declaration of Independence.

Meanwhile, Adnan Asfour, a senior Hamas official, said that the new cabinet will only get confidence from the  Palestinian Legislative Council, and not from the PLO.

Sami Abu Zuhri, Hamas media spokesperson, said that the decision of the executive committee to reject the Hamas government program is not coherent with the Palestinian law and the political map.  

“The committee is isolating itself from the Palestinians, from the Arabs and Muslims”, Abu Zuhri stated, “The PLO needs to be reshaped in order to enable all of the Palestinian movements, including Hamas, to join it”.