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Palestinian factions boycott PA meeting on Israel annexation

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas attends a executive council meeting of Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) in Ramallah, West Bank on 7 May 2020 [Issam Rimawi/Anadolu Agency]
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas attends a executive council meeting of Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) in Ramallah, West Bank on 7 May 2020 [Issam Rimawi/Anadolu Agency]

Hamas, Islamic Jihad and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) announced on Wednesday and Thursday that they will not attend a meeting scheduled tomorrow with the Palestinian leadership to discuss ways to respond to Israel’s plans to annex swathes of the West Bank.

Hamas said in a statement on Wednesday that it “did not receive an official invitation to attend” the meeting, adding that “facing this Zionist project through a meeting held in Ramallah which Hamas and all the resistance factions cannot attend, is a waste of precious time.”

The movement called on Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas to invite the factions and forces at the level of general secretaries for an urgent meeting to set up an effective national strategy to address the annexation plan.

Islamic Jihad also called for an urgent meeting in the presence of the general secretaries as well as to restructure the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) “on the basis of achieving partnership and ending the division”.

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In its statement, the Islamic Jihad noted that although it had received an official invitation to attend the meeting, it would not participate.

For its part, the PFLP rejected the PA’s responses to the Israeli steps to liquidate the Palestinian cause, saying “they did not exceed denunciation and condemnation”.

“It is unfortunate that the threat to take practical steps such as withdrawing recognition [of Israel’s right to exist] and stopping security coordination with [Israel] has been used over and over in the past without ever being fulfilled,” it said.

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