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Fatah and Hamas rivalry escalates leaving Palestinians vulnerable Open in fullscreen

The New Arab

Fatah and Hamas rivalry escalates leaving Palestinians vulnerable

Israeli settlers stormed East Jerusalem on Wednesday morning [Facebook]

Date of publication: 31 May, 2017

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The rivalry between Palestinian political factions Fatah and Hamas is escalating, while Palestinians face violence and shortages in basic humanitarian provisions.

The rivalry between Palestinian political factions Fatah and Hamas is escalating, while Palestinians face violence and shortages in basic humanitarian provisions.

Senior Hamas official Salah Al-Bardawil on Monday accused Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas of stalling the Qatari brokered reconciliation process by wanting to “secure a political deal with Donald Trump” instead of “concentrating on the unity,” Palestinian Maan News Agency reported.

He had also claimed that the Palestinian leader was increasing the demands for national reconciliation, implying that Abbas is not willing to achieve reconciliation for as long as he is in office.

Fatah spokesperson Osama Al-Qawasmeh hit back at Al-Bardawil, arguing that it is Hamas, not Fatah that is stalling the unity process.

He slammed Hamas’ boycott of the municipal elections in Gaza, which took place on May 13, saying it had perpetuated conflict and deepened divisions between the two parties. 

Read more: Fears of blackout after Palestinian Authority cuts Gaza's electricity

On the same day, Israeli police broke into the Al-Sawana district of East Jerusalem and tore down Palestinian flags and banners.

Tensions have continued to escalate in East Jerusalem’s Silwan neighbourhood, when 234 Israeli settlers broke into the courtyards of Al-Aqsa Mosque on Wednesday morning, according to local media outlet Silwanic.

The settlers also threw rocks at houses, verbally abused Palestinian residents and vandalised cars whilst locals tried to stop them.

Last Sunday, the deputy chairman of the Gaza power authority, Fathi Sheikh Khalil asked Fatah to reverse its request to Israel to stop electricity from entering the besieged enclave.

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