Fatah Denies Face-off with Hamas

The Fatah movement of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas is revamping its various armed wings and bringing them under one command, but never seeks a new face-off with Hamas, a senior Fatah official said.

Fatah Denies Face-off with Hamas

The Fatah movement of PalestinianPresident Mahmoud Abbas is revamping its various armed wings and bringing themunder one command, but never seeks a new face-off with Hamas, a senior Fatahofficial said on Friday, April 6.

"It's high time that Fatah closed its ranks andknit together its affiliate bodies under one command," Qaddoura Fares toldIslamOnline.net.

"Palestinian factions have long faulted us fordisunity," he added.

Fares said Fatah's various armed wings are beingstreamlined into an umbrella apparatus called the "Storm Forces."

"The new security apparatus will be under onecommand and receive funds from one source," he added, but did notelaborate.

He said Fatah felt it incumbent upon itself tocorrect past mistakes and give its armed wings a new shape.

More than 90 Palestinians were killed in clashesbetween Fatah and Hamas since December.

But the infighting came to a halt after the tworival groups signed an agreement to form a unity government on February 8,during two-day crisis talks in the Saudi holy city of Makkah.

According to the power sharing agreement betweenHamas and Fatah, Hamas took 12 of the 25 portfolios in the coalition cabinet,while Fatah took six.

Seven ministries, including the powerful finance,foreign affairs and interior posts, went to independents and smaller factions.

No Face-off

Fares categorically denied reports that the newFatah's body was groomed for a potential face-off wit Hamas.

"Fatah security cadres did not receive trainingabroad," he stressed. "We have not even established a new militarybody. We are only trying to unify our military wings."

Fares warned that Israel was seeking to pit thePalestinians against one another by such baseless reports.

"Israel never gives up hope ofsowing sedition," he said.

Israel's mass-circulation Haaretz reported on April 1 thatFatah has established a new body to recruit thousands of Palestinians inanticipation of new clashes with rival Hamas.

The daily said that nearly 1,400 people wererecruited for Fatah's "special force".

Nearly 1,000 of the new recruiters received militarytraining, including 350 who were trained in Egypt, the daily added.

TheUnited States, however, made it public that itseeks to strengthen Fatah's forces and Abbas's guards by providing them withnon-lethal assistance liketraining, vehicles and other equipment.

In January, US President George W. Bush askedCongress to approve 86 million dollars in aid for Abbas to train and equip hisforces.

After congressional objection, the US is nowseeking to revise the sum.


Fares said both Fatah and Hamas are resolved toimplement the Makkah deal.

"There is no room for irresponsible statementsbeing made every not and then," he stressed.

"Enough with mutual mistrust, which marredbilateral ties between Hamas and Fatah," he said, referring to recentstatements by senior Hamas member and former foreign minister Mahmoud al-Zahharwho accused Fatah of turning its back to the Makkah deal.

"Such statements harm the understanding betweenFatah and Hamas," Fares warned.

"We should refrain from such statements andstand united in the face of any bid to disunite us."

Fares also revealed the coming days will see newefforts to reform the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO).

"Time has come for reconstruction," hesaid.

"All parties should be responsible for helpingrender success to our political partnership and breathe new life into thePLO," he said.


Güncelleme Tarihi: 20 Eylül 2018, 18:16