Following statements made by the Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in which he threatened to fire the Hamas-run government, Ghazi Hamad, a spokesman for the government said that Abbas should not have made such a statement at an early point in the tenure of the new government.

"We expect from President Abbas to protect his government and not to make such declarations," Hamad said in an interview from Gaza City.

The Palestinian president said that he had the authority to remove the newly elected Hamas government from power.

Mahmoud Abbas also warned the Hamas-led government that it had little choice but to negotiate with , in an interview with CNN-Turk aired on Monday.

"The constitution gives me clear and definite authority to remove a government from power, but I don’t want to use this authority," Abbas said in the interview that was recorded before he arrived in on Sunday.

"Everyone should know that by law this power is in my hands."

Hamas also said it will not leave in silence and threatened to end the one-year-old truce with , if the government was removed by a presidential decree.

"We will go, but we will not recognize the Palestinian political regime. We will not participate in any new election and we will go underground as we did before and we will not adhere to any commitments, any truce, by anyone," said the official, asking to remain anonymous.

Abbas’ aides said the president does not plan to remove the government, yet his statements were in response to Khaled Masha’al, head of Hamas’ political bureau who criticized Abbas and implicitly accused him and his Fatah party of plotting against Hamas.

The President’s aides said he will do so only if the economic situation in the territories becomes "catastrophic."

In any case, any new assigned Prime Minister will need the approval of the Hamas-controlled legislature.