Palestinian cabinet convenes in Gaza in move to reconcile with Hamas
October 3, 2017 | 8:24 PM
by Reuters
Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah, centre, chairs a cabinet meeting in Gaza City October 3, 2017. Photo - Reuters/Mohammed Abed/Pool

Gaza: Prime Minister Rami Al Hamdallah chaired the first meeting of the Palestinian cabinet in the Gaza Strip for three years on Tuesday, in a move towards reconciliation between the mainstream Fatah party and Hamas.

Hamas seized Gaza in 2007 in fighting with Fatah forces loyal to President Mahmoud Abbas and has ruled the impoverished desert enclave of two million people since.

The cabinet session was the first in Gaza since 2014, Hamdallah told ministers, and a major step in a reconciliation process promoted by neighbouring Egypt and other U.S.-allied Arab countries.

"Today, we stand before an important historical moment as we begin to get over our wounds, put our differences aside and place the higher national interest above all else," Hamdallah said.

Hamas chief Ismail Haniyeh echoed the optimism, saying: "There might be some difficulties on the road, but we will conclude reconciliation, regardless of the cost."

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