The Deputy Chairman of the Political Bureau of Hamas has announced that Hamas and Fatah have agreed a reconciliation deal. Dr. Mousa Abu Marzouk said that it is now time to turn the page on the damaging split and "open a new era of harmony and struggle to restore Palestinian rights". He added that the factions will meet next week to sign the agreement in a formal ceremony.
Abu Marzouk told a press conference in Cairo that the Fatah and Hamas delegations had signed an initial document of understanding. The agreement provides for the formation of an independent government, the resumption of the work of the Legislative Council and setting a date for the elections.
The Deputy Chairman also stressed that the agreement between Hamas and Fatah was signed so "there is no topic left for negotiations". What remains, he said, is to celebrate the agreement and to form the government. "The gates of Gaza are now open to every Palestinian."
It was emphasized during the press conference that the conditions set by the International Quartet "were not mentioned" in the reconciliation agreement.