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Fatah refuses to meet Hamas in Gaza

Hamas' official spokesman Sami Abu-Zuhri said yesterday that there are understandings to hold a meeting with Fatah within days.

In an interview with a local Palestinian TV station, Abu-Zuhri said: "There is a proposal for a meeting between Hamas and Fatah, but Fatah refuses to sit with Hamas in Gaza," he said, "it prefers that the meeting to take place in Egypt."

Replying to Fatah Leader Mahmoud Abbas' accusations that Hamas took the decision to start the latest war, Abu-Zuhri said that his movement has nothing to do with such decisions.

He stressed that the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu took the decision to start the war and all that Hamas did was defend Palestinians. "Hamas is not connected to the starting of the war," he said.

He expressed his surprise over the accusations waged against his movement by Fatah leaders and spokespeople, mainly speaking about issues which the two groups had dealt with before the reconciliation agreement in April.

Abbas has previously criticised Hamas and called for it to accept Israeli demands to lay down its arms. "We will not retain partnerships with Hamas unless it accepts one arm, one legitimacy and one decision in the Palestinian territories," Abbas said.

This means that Hamas has to submit its arms to the PA or any other third party in order to retain its partnership with Fatah.

Abu-Zuhri said that these are unjustified and unreasonable remarks based on false and baseless information.

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