Hamas, Fatah meet to discuss formation of new government

Leaders from Hamas and the ruling Fatah party have met twice in recent days to discuss the formation of a new government following Hamas' landslide victory in Palestinian elections last week, a Palestinian official said Friday.

In a continuation of the meetings, Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas, of Fatah, was to meet with Hamas leaders in Gaza on Saturday, said Ziad Abu Amr, who serves as a mediator between Hamas and Abbas. Hamas has said it would like Fatah to join in a coalition, but senior Fatah leaders said they preferred to stay in the opposition.

Over the past several days, Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh and Mahmoud Zahar met with several Fatah leaders in two three-hour-long meetings to discuss the new government, Abu Amr said. The meetings were positive and Hamas again asked Fatah to join a coalition, he said. The Fatah officials said they would discuss it with party leaders, reports the AP.


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