Thousands of Palestinians commemorated the 13th anniversary of President Yasser Arafat’s death and the tenth anniversary of the death of the victims of the Palestinian division in an event organised by the National Islamic Commission for Development and Social Solidarity (Takaful), led by dismissed Fatah official, Muhammad Dahlan. The event was held in Al-Kutaiba Square in Gaza.
Hamas officials, including Khalil Al-Hayya, Salah Bardawil and figures from all the political factions, attended the event.
The attendees held up Palestinian, Emirati and Egyptian flags, as well as pictures of the late Arafat along with images of Dahlan and Fatah flags.
In a speech at the event, Majed Abu Shammaleh said that the Cairo agreement reached in July “has laid the foundation for a true national reconciliation that turned the black page of history by ending the nation’s most dangerous and sensitive issue, i.e. societal reconciliation.”
He considered the reconciliation not only to be the handing over of ministries and crossings, but also the activation of the three authorities’ role in a manner focusing on partnership and a lack of exclusion.
On his part, senior Hamas official Al-Hayya called for the formation of a national unity government and holding elections in order to break away from the current Palestinian situation.
“We want a national unity government that carries out its national responsibilities. We want to hold elections and we want all the Palestinians in the diaspora, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip to feel the reconciliation,” he said.
Al-Hayya added: “My dear people, you must prepare yourselves to head to the ballot boxes. This is the true test for our constants and freedom. We want to end this national situation, which does not please our friends, but rather our foes.”
He noted that the national reconciliation must occur on the basis of partnership and joint work, not monopolisation and the marginalisation and exclusion of any party.