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The New Arab

Hamas leader in Egypt capital for Gaza siege talks

Haniyeh was elected Hamas leader in May [Anadolu]

Date of publication: 9 September, 2017

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Hamas head Ismail Haniya is in Cairo for talks with Egyptian officials on the country's blockade on Gaza, which has caused huge misery on Palestinians there.
Hamas' new leader Ismail Haniyeh landed in Cairo on Saturday for talks with Egyptian officials to end a siege on the Palestinian enclave of Gaza.

Haniyeh will try to convince Egypt to end its crippling blockade on Hamas-controlled Gaza.

Egypt joined Israel in its siege on Gaza in 2013, following the overthrow of President Mohamad Morsi from the Muslim Brotherhood.

President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi has accused Hamas of aiding Muslim Brotherhood militants in Egypt and enforced a blockade on the Palestinian territory.

Hamas issued a statement saying Haniyeh would discuss "mechanisms to ease the siege on Gaza and other issues of mutual concern" with Egyptian officials.

The two sides will also hold talks on power supplies to the Palestinian territory frequently hit by outages and political reconciliation with Hamas' West Bank-based political rival Fatah.

Relations between Cairo and Hamas improved this summer, with expectations that the Rafah border crossing between Gaza and Egypt could be reopened shortly.

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas from Fatah has blocked payments for electricity to Israel causing major power shortages in Gaza. 

Haniyeh's visit to Egypt could be a way of bypassing Ramallah's own blockade on Gaza.

Haniyeh was elected as Hamas leader in May.

Agencies contributed to this story

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