Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, harshly slammed the reconciliation efforts between the rival Fateh and Hamas movements in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.In an interview with the CNN, Netanyahu said that the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank cannot claim to seek peace with Israel while seeking peace with Hamas that, according to Netanyahu, is determined to destroy Israel.
He tried to explain his stance by linking the issue to Al Qaida terrorist network by asking the reporter “Can you imagine a peace agreement with Al Qaeda? Of course you can’t.
On Wednesday, Palestinian President, Mahmoud Abbas, said that he is willing to head to Gaza in order to hold talks with Hamas leaders in order to boost unity efforts.
Abbas has not been in Gaza since more than four years following violent gun battles between Hamas and Fateh gunmen and security forces.
The Youth Coalition Movement in Palestine is growing and demanding Hamas and Fateh factions put their differences aside and achieve unity.
Social and political activists started a campaign that was also launched on Facebook demanding internal Palestinian unity between all factions, and an immediate end to internal divisions.
The youth are not necessarily connected to any political faction, while their only aim is unity among all Palestinians, in addition to real reforms and reconciliation.
The Israeli Jerusalem Post quoted Israeli officials stating that the protests and changes in the Arab world, and Palestinian-Israeli negotiations cables that were leaked by Al Jazeera, pushed the Palestinians to tougher stances regarding the resumption of peace talks with Israel.
The Post added that this issue was clearly apparent in official Palestinian stances, and the stance of Chief Palestinian negotiator, Dr. Saeb Erekat, during his two meetings with Quartet officials over the past three weeks.
The resumption of settlement activities and the demolition of homes in occupied East Jerusalem, in addition to the ongoing Israeli violations in the occupied territories, pushed the Palestinian Authority to halt talks with Israel.
In addition to the Israel and its strongest ally, the United States, regard Hamas movement as a terrorist group and refuse to hold talks with them.
Hamas garnered an overwhelming victory in the 2006 Legislative elections, and the preceding Local Councils elections. The elections were observed by international monitors, but the outcome that strongly placed Hamas in power angered the United States and Israel who launched a campaign to void the outcome.
Israel also kidnapped dozens of elected officials and legislators in an attempt to obstruct the work of the elected government.
The strict Israeli siege on Gaza also led to the death of hundreds of patients who could not have access to basic medications and medical equipment.
Following the 2007 and most of 2008 deadly clashes between Hamas and Fateh, president Mahmoud Abbas formed a new cabinet in the West Bank while Hamas regarded the new government as illegal as it violated the elections outcome.
Reconciliation efforts were repeatedly conducted by Egypt and other Arab countries, but a unity agreement was never reached.
Israel is threatening that should a new government with Hamas on-board be formed, both Tel Aviv and Washington will boycott it.