A senior member of Fatah's Central Committee, Nabil Shaath, has told the media that the meeting last Saturday between a delegation from his organisation and the Prime Minister of the Palestinian government in Gaza, Ismail Haniyeh, was "successful and fruitful".
Shaath explained that his visit to Gaza was intended to emphasise the positive stance of Fatah with regards to Palestinian national unity and to translate that position into a mobilisation of the movement in the Gaza Strip. He praised the position of Hamas in confirming its intention to move forward on the implementation of the reconciliation agreement. This includes the application of all agreed procedures, especially the opening of the headquarters of the Central Election Commission in Gaza in preparation for the upcoming elections, as well as the procedures related to the status of the Palestinian Liberation Organisation (PLO) and Fatah in Gaza.
The international relations commissioner for Fatah confirmed his movement's "firm and resolute position towards achieving reconciliation and national unity under which democratic elections will take place." This, said Mr Shaath, will "strengthen the Palestinians in the face of the Israeli occupation."
Speaking about negotiations with the Israelis, Shaath referred to the clarity of the Palestinian Authority's position. "There has been no change on the conditions required for negotiations between the parties," he insisted. "The Israelis have not submitted anything to the Quartet which suggests a change in their policy of clinging to illegal settlements, the siege of Gaza and the occupation."