(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF THE SAUDI NEWS AGENCY ASHARQ AL-AWSAT)
Cairo Invites Hamas for Talks over Reconciliation
Egypt’s intelligence service invited the head of Hamas Politburo, Ismail Haniyeh, to visit Cairo within the next few days to discuss various issues, mainly the stumbling Palestinian reconciliation.
Several sources in Hamas confirmed that Haniyeh had received an invitation to visit the Egyptian capital along with a senior delegation from the movement.
The sources expected the visit to take place as soon as possible, “perhaps next week.”
The sources said the main aim of the invitation was to resume Egypt’s efforts to complete the reconciliation between Fatah and Hamas.
Egypt decided to intensify its contacts with all parties in order to remove obstacles to the implementation of the agreement it sponsored on October 12 last year.
Egyptian efforts came after the appointment of a new Egyptian intelligence chief.
Before Hamas received an invitation to visit Cairo, Fatah Central Committee member Azzam al-Ahmad held talks with Egyptian officials in this regard.
Al-Ahmad said that Egypt has started moving towards completing the reconciliation file.
Sources told Asharq Al-Awsat that Egypt wanted to reach a specific agreement with Hamas on controversial issues with Fatah, such as security empowerment, as well as the possibility of forming a unity government to prepare for the general elections.
Egypt has also asked Hamas to maintain peaceful “return marches” so as not to cause a deterioration of the situation that could lead to a new war.
Abbas had announced his intention to take national and financial measures against the Gaza Strip after the assassination attempt on the Palestinian prime minister in Gaza last March.
The assassination attempt froze all contacts on reconciliation that had already been stalled between the two movements.