Hamas on Wednesday blasted Palestinian Authority (PA) chairman Mahmoud Abbas following his speech to the UN Security Council, in essence denying the legitimacy of his rule. In a statement to the press, Hamas noted that the political plan presented by Abbas in his speech does not reflect the national position which calls for an end to the Oslo Accords and which opposes a resumption of negotiations with Israel. The plan, claimed Hamas, expresses Abbas’s desire to hold exclusive rights to decision-making on the national level.
The group accused Abbas of creating a new mechanism for the failed peace process and for resuming negotiations despite Israel’s hostile activity and the “dangerous” bias of the United States in favor of Israel on Jerusalem and the refugees and the encouragement it gives Israel to commit “crimes” and eliminate the Palestinian problem. In this context, Hamas demanded an end to Abbas’s exclusive decision-making, and instead of following the path of a political process, to accelerate the unification of the ranks within the Palestinian camp and reach an agreement on a national strategy that focuses on the path of resistance.
Hamas and Fatah have been at odds since 2007, when Hamas took over Gaza in a bloody coup. All attempts to reconcile the sides have failed. The two groups signed a reconciliation agreement in October, as part of which Hamas was to transfer power in Gaza by December 1. That deadline was initially put back by 10 days and then appeared to have been cancelled altogether after it reportedly hit “obstacles”. Just last week, Hamas denounced the PA government in Ramallah, headed by Rami Hamdallah, for its policy of “deceiving, creating tension and deliberately neglecting the needs of the residents of the Gaza Strip.”
Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoum called the PA government a “Fatah” government and accused it of seeking to impose sanctions against Gaza and to provide a pretext the creation of a harsh reality for residents in all areas of life.