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Egypt: media blackout on Palestinian reconciliation talks

December 4, 2017 at 5:54 am

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas [Shadi Hatem/Apaimages]

On Sunday, Fatah and Hamas delegations continued meetings in Cairo on the topic of national reconciliation.

Well-informed Palestinian sources told Quds Press that “The meetings have been bilateral and tripartite since the two delegations arrived to Cairo last Friday evening.”

The sources added, “The Egyptian intelligence delegate, Minister Mohammed Mazhar, has stipulated that the two delegations must not leak any information to the media to ensure the success of the talks.”

They also pointed out that the most important issues that were thoroughly discussed were: sanctions that are imposed on Gaza, employees, and the government taking control of Gaza.

From his part, the writer and political analyst, Fayez Abu Shamala, said that the bits of information released from Cairo are very scarce and their sources are not reliable. Therefore, it is not possible to take them as basis for any analysis.

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Abu Shamala told Quds Press that “The next two days may be decisive for the Palestinian people in general and the Gaza Strip in particular, given the undertakings that are taking place in Cairo, especially with the possibility of the United States’ declaration of Jerusalem as the capital of the Jewish state.”

Abu Shamala did not rule out that recent moves could potentially culminate in a plan to oust Mahmoud Abbas.

However, he said after giving it a second thought: “But this is not certain, and the reason behind the visit of deputies of Fatah movement, affiliated with [Abbas’ rival] Mohammad Dahlan, to Cairo is unknown.”