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Palestinian President Expected to Ask Hamas to Form Government Tuesday


Leaders from the Palestinian militant group Hamas say Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas will formally ask their prime minister-designate to form a government on Tuesday.

Following talks with Mr. Abbas, Hamas leaders said the president would present Ismail Haniyeh with a formal letter of appointment and officially begin the process of filling Cabinet posts.

Hamas dominated recent parliamentary elections, and the naming of Ismail Haniyeh as prime minister is a formality.

Mr. Abbas said Sunday that the new government faces a financial crisis after Israel stopped the monthly transfer of millions of dollars in customs revenue it collects for the Palestinian Authority.

Western nations have also threatened to cut funds unless Hamas renounces violence and accepts Israel's right to exist.

Also Monday, other Hamas leaders met with Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei in Tehran. The ayatollah urged Muslim nations to provide financial support to the Palestinian government.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.