Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas assured Hamas that the boycott will
be lifted despite their refusal to recognize Israel; rather it is
conditioned on a non-partisan government of technocrats, according to
Ismail Radwan, Hamas spokesman in Gaza.


"The new government has not been asked to recognize the Zionist enemy," Radwan told Haaretz Tuesday; this sudden change in policy flies in the face of one of three Quartet demands that Hamas recognize Israel, which has plunged Palestinian society into job loss and poverty with 80% unemployment in Gaza and 24% in the West Bank.

Moussa Abu Marzouk, the deputy chair of Hamas' political bureau, confirmed Radwan’s statement:  The new government "has not been asked to recognize Israel, and therefore will not recognize it."

Senior Fatah officials maintain that Hamas’ statements confirm its wish to stymie the nearing agreement on a coalition government. Fatah’s spokesman in Gaza, Maher Makdad, stressed that Hamas must understand that the new government will be under the control of Abbas and therefore will have to follow his rules, particularly in the diplomatic sphere.

According to an Abbas associate, head of Hamas’ political bureau Khaled Meshal, has already approved the likely division of ministerial posts: nine for Hamas, six for Fatah and nine for non-partisan ministers or members of smaller parliamentary blocs.

The associate added, "Meshal also agreed to accept the principles of Abu Mazen's letter of appointment. But now, it seems that Abu Marzouk is trying to undermine the agreements with Meshal. He has joined with Prime Minister Haniyeh, who is insisting on retaining his position, and the 'Gaza group' (Abu Marzouk, Haniyeh and Interior Minister Said Siyam) is not interested in giving up their membership in the government."

Radwan responded, "We do not intend to react to Abu Mazen's letter of appointment now. There will be a new letter of appointment based on the talks between the factions and the understandings they have reached."

Radwan has no doubt that the boycott will be lifted, especially when considering America’s and Europe’s current situation: "the American government is in a deep domestic and foreign crisis, while among the European states, there is a bitter dispute over continuing the siege."

Meanwhile, members of the Atamna family, which lost 18 members in one day after being attacked by Israeli shells last week, commented on the devastating loss of life.

Tahani Atamna, who lost her 12-year-old son, said "I don't wish any Jewish mother to go through what I'm going through, this disaster of seeing her son die before her eyes; I only hope that we will be the last victims of this war."

Another family member, Riad Atamna, said, "I don't want this to happen to anyone in the world; not to Jews, not to Christians and not to Muslims. Enough blood. Enough."

Sourced from Haaretz