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May 12, 2014 4:34 pm

PLO Tells Hamas Recognizing Israel Not Necessary for Unity Government

avatar by Joshua Levitt

The final scene of a new Hamas video published to coincide with Israeli Independence Day. Photo: Screenshot.

The final scene of a new Hamas video published to coincide with Israeli Independence Day. Photo: Screenshot.

Azzam al-Ahmad, a member of the Central Committee of Palestinian Authority President Abbas’s Fatah political faction, has told his counterpart at rival Hamas that recognizing Israel is not necessary for the planned formation of a unity government between the two parties.

In a statement reported by Palestine Press on Monday, al-Ahmad described the nuances of the interconnecting governmental organizations, with the PA set up under the Oslo Accords to be a strictly domestic government, with all foreign relations tasks remaining with the Palestine Liberation Organization. As such, Ahmed claimed, the PA has never recognized Israel, and the planned unity government has no obligation to do so.

The report was flagged by blogger Elder of Ziyon on Monday. The blogger wrote, “In reality, the PA does have official talks and communications with Israel all the time, for example to request permission for sick people to leave Gaza. The PA reports to the PLO which officially does recognize Israel.”

“This indicates that Fatah is attempting to fudge the facts however it can to clear the path for Hamas to enter the government,” Elder said. “Whether this means that the PA will no longer deal directly with Israel after a new government is formed is an open question.”

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“There is another aspect of this theater: Internally, and to the UN, the PLO says that the PA no longer exists and it is all part of the ‘State of Palestine’ that the PLO represents at the UN,” he said. “Now it is telling Hamas that this isn’t true. But it will also tell the US and the Europeans that there is a separate PA, when it suits the PLO’s purposes. As it has done since its founding, the PLO will put on a completely different face depending on who it is talking to, and the world happily goes along with this charade because it is a lot easier than admitting that the entity that it honors so much is nothing but hot air.”

In his statement, al-Ahmad also said that no independent militias would be allowed under the unity government, which contradicts Hamas’ insistence on maintaining its terrorist-military Al Qassam Brigades, as has Fatah’s Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigade.

Elder of Ziyon said: “It sounds like the ‘unity government’ will be based on a foundation of lies. Which is pretty much how the existing PA works anyway.”

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