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Palestinian Pres. Blames Unity Government Failure on Hamas

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas swore in a new government Thursday and blamed Hamas for failing to make progress towards a unity government.

Mr. Abbas said there have been no positive signs coming from Hamas on agreeing to new elections.

Hamas is refusing to recognize the new Palestinian government, instead recognizing its own prime minister in Gaza.

Hamas militants seized control of Gaza in 2007 and have used the area to fire rockets into Israel. Mr. Abbas' Western-recognized Fatah party in the West Bank has expressed a willingness to talk peace with Israel.

Fatah and Hamas agreed two years ago to set up an interim unity government and hold new elections, but are still far apart on implementing the deal.



University president Rami Hamdallah was sworn-in Thursday as the new Palestinian prime minister, promising to work for unity with Hamas. He replaces former Prime Minister Salam Fayyad, who resigned in April.

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