After almost one month and one week in office, the Palestinian interior minister Hani al-Qawasmi submitted Monday his resignation to Palestinian Prime Minister, Ismail Haniya. Haniya rejected the resignation and asked his interior minister to stay in office.
The attempted resignation by the Palestinian interior minister came ten days after the announcement of a security plan, aimed at ending internal unrest in the coastal Gaza Strip and reforming the Palestinian security bodies.
Answering a question by the IMEMC as to the reasons behind the interior minister’s move, a spokesman of the Palestinian cabinet confirmed his cabinet’s rejection and went on to say: “The resignation was rejected by the cabinet and I think that the minister of interior will continue his work in his position. When the president comes back, there will be a trilateral meeting between the president, the prime minister and the minister of interior to solve all the troubles".
“The troubles may include the situation inside the ministry, the quality, the materials, the financial support, many things". Local and international media reports cited a lack of cooperation among security officials with respect to enforcing law and order.
Talal Okal, a leading Gaza political analyst, outlined the possible repercussions of this resignation in light of recent Hamas-Fatah infighting, robberies and bombings: "This resignation signals the frustration to the Palestinian population, as the minister has resigned after one month and one week in office, which means that the government is unable to deal with the internal situation. The impact will affect morale, and this might encourage those involved in chaos and security lapses to carry out further criminal practices and violate the citizens' rights and properties".
The post of interior minister had been discussed for a month by rival Hamas and Fatah parties during negotiations on the unity government in late February. Hamas recently objected to the appointment by President Mahmoud Abbas of Fatah leader Mohammad Dahalan as a top security aide, calling it illegal.