Palestinian prime minister, Ismail Haniya of Hamas, made on Saturday contacts with several Arab leaders in the region over conciliation between the ruling Hamas party in Gaza and the ruling Fatah party in the West Bank.
In a statement, delivered to press by the Gaza-based cabinet, PM Haniya, phoned late on Saturday the Saudi Foreign Minister, Saud Alfeisal, over possible successful dialogue between the rival Hamas and Fatah parties.
Premier Haniya also called up the Syrian, the Yemeni and the Algerian presidents as well as the Egyptian intelligence chief, Omar Suleiman, within consultations to bring the rival parties back together around the dialogue table.
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas of Fatah said in a televised speech last week that Hamas and Fatah should return to dialogue based on the Yemeni conciliation proposal, drafted on March.
The democratically-elected Hamas party wrestled control over the coastal territory in June of last year, amidst fighting with the secular Fatah party of Abbas. Since then, Abbas has been demanding Hamas to give up control on Gaza, but Hamas still rejects.
In a phone call with Abbas, the U.S Secretary of States, Condoleezza Rice, whose country has sidelined Hamas since March2006, asked for clarifications about his recent call for dialogue with Hamas.
Rice is due to arrive in the region this week, in a bid to push forward stalled Palestinian-Israeli peace talks, in light of Israel’s intransigence with regard to settlement activities on occupied Palestinian lands.