Written by William Lucht
October 17, 2022
Algeria is preparing to host 12 Palestinian groups at an upcoming two-day summit. Rivaling leaders of the Palestinian groups, Hamas, and Fatah are planned to attend. The proposal to invite both was drawn up after, “months of effort by Algeria to reach a common vision for boosting the Palestinian national action”, Palestinian ambassador Fayez Abu Aita said on Saturday. This latest initiative is another attempt at mending years long distrust and eroding relationships amongst Palestinians and their leadership.
On the table for discussion, will be how to move forward with Palestinian elections – the first to be held since 2006, payment of salaries for approximately 30,000 Hamas employees, and the future of the contentious militant arm of Hamas, the Qassam Brigade. The military wing of Hamas is set to be a bitterly divided talking point as both Fatah and Israel want to see it completely dismantled.
Those with vested interests in the talks, specifically civilian’s and those living in the West Bank and Gaza, have low expectations these talks will amount to anything fruitful. Previous talks have failed to come to positive conclusions, and now that differences are at an even higher level, successful deliberation is ever more out of reach. Hamas’s control over the Gaza Strip is unlikely to be something they will let go of, especially after their victory coming from the defeat of Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah party. This political victory was not recognized by Fatah, and what followed was armed conflict. The Palestinian leadership has since been divided, with a Fatah-led Palestinian Authority (PA) governing the occupied West Bank and Hamas running the Gaza Strip, which has been under an Israeli blockade since 2007.
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