News / Middle East

New Palestinian Unity Government Sworn In

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas (C) meets with ministers of the unity government, in the West Bank city of Ramallah June 2, 2014. Abbas swore in a Palestinian unity government on Monday under a reconciliation deal with Hamas.
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas (C) meets with ministers of the unity government, in the West Bank city of Ramallah June 2, 2014. Abbas swore in a Palestinian unity government on Monday under a reconciliation deal with Hamas.
Scott Bobb
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has sworn in a unity government under a deal with rival group Hamas.  

Abbas, who heads the mainstream Fatah Palestinian political faction, presented the reconciliation government at his headquarters in the West Bank city of Ramallah.
 
"The government is a temporary one and its duty is to prepare for elections soon, in addition to its duty to help the people," Abbas said.
 
Abbas said the new ministers are technocrats and independents who don't belong to either Fatah or Hamas and that the new government would abide by commitments made by previous Palestinian administrations and by agreements ratified by the umbrella Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO).
 
Senior Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh gestures as leaves his office as a former Hamas government prime minister, in Gaza City June 2, 2014.Senior Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh gestures as leaves his office as a former Hamas government prime minister, in Gaza City June 2, 2014.
x
Senior Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh gestures as leaves his office as a former Hamas government prime minister, in Gaza City June 2, 2014.
Senior Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh gestures as leaves his office as a former Hamas government prime minister, in Gaza City June 2, 2014.

The elections are aimed at ending a split with Hamas that began when Hamas seized control of the Gaza Strip seven years ago.
 
Hamas is not a member of the PLO. It opposes negotiations with Israel, which it wants to destroy.
 
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Sunday that his government would not negotiate with any Palestinian group that included Hamas. 
 
He called on all responsible elements in the international community not to hurry and recognize a Palestinian government that included Hamas. Netanyahu said Hamas is a terrorist organization that calls for the destruction of Israel and this will not strengthen peace, but rather strengthen terror.
 
Abbas announced a reconciliation deal was imminent after talks broke down with Israel over reviving the stalled Middle East peace negotiations.
 
Fatah and Hamas announced they were reconciling nearly two years ago, but implementation of the deal encountered many obstacles.
 
Israel, following the Hamas takeover in Gaza, imposed a blockade on the enclave that crippled its economy and caused frequent shortages of basic goods.
 
Gazans survived in large part on humanitarian aid and hundreds of smuggling  tunnels into Egypt. Most of the tunnels were destroyed after the coup last year that brought the military to power in Egypt.
 
The new Egyptian government considers Hamas to be an off-shoot of the Muslim Brotherhood, which it has vowed to destroy.

You May Like

Bleak China Economic Outlook Rattles Markets

Several key European stock indexes were down up to three percent, while US market indexes were off around 2.5 percent in afternoon trading More

DRC Tries Mega-Farms to Feed Population

Park at Boukanga Lonzo currently has 5,000 hectares under cultivation, crops stretching as far as eye can see, and is start of ambitious large-scale agriculture plan More

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Areas are spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, source of livelihood for fishermen and herders who have called the marshes home for generations More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOAi
X
August 31, 2015 2:17 AM
Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOA

Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Iraq's southern wetlands are in crisis. These areas are the spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, and source of livelihood for fishermen and herders. Faith Lapidus has more.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Rebuilding New Orleans' Music Scene

Ten years after Hurricane Katrina inundated New Orleans, threatening to wash away its vibrant musical heritage along with its neighborhoods, the beat goes on. As Bronwyn Benito and Faith Lapidus report, a Musicians' Village is preserving the city's unique sound.
Video

Video In Russia, Auto Industry in Tailspin

Industry insiders say country relies too heavily on imports as inflation cuts too many consumers out of the market. Daniel Schearf has more from Moscow.
Video

Video Scientist Calls Use of Fetal Tissue in Medical Research Essential

An anti-abortion group responsible for secret recordings of workers at a women's health care organization claims the workers shown are offering baby parts for sale, a charge the organization strongly denies. While the selling of fetal tissue is against the law in the United States, abortion and the use of donated fetal tissue for medical research are both legal. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.

VOA Blogs