The deputy head of Hamas political bureau, Moussa Abu Marzouq, says the Islamic Resistance Movement is awaiting an invitation by Cairo to discuss a reconciliation pact with the rival Fatah party.
"Hamas wants to open the new reconciliation paper to match it with what was previously agreed upon. The Movement wants real reconciliation so as not to repeat previous experiences which led to more division in the Palestinian arena," Abu Marzouq told al-Aqsa television station on Wednesday.
The Hamas official also dismissed the allegations that attempts for inter-Palestinian reconciliation deal have fallen short. He blamed ‘certain parties’ for endeavors to strain the relationship between Egyptian authorities and Hamas officials.
Abu Marzouq underscored that Egypt never rebuked Hamas for its position towards the reconciliation pact, contradicting some media reports.
Hamas and Fatah have long been wrangling with each other over substantial discords which have caused real bottlenecks to mend fences and repair the internal Palestinian divisions. Egypt has, meanwhile, been struggling for months to get opponent Palestinian factions to sign a reconciliation deal. The latest Cairo proposal aims to lay the groundwork for new presidential and legislative elections next summer.
Ever since Hamas won an outright majority in 2006 Palestinian legislative elections, the two factions have pursued bitter rivalry featuring sporadic fighting and tit-for-tat arrests. Most of the fighting has been provoked by Fatah, which remains secular and heavily backed and funded by the US, the primary Israeli sponsor.
Mutual hostility between the two factions boiled over in the summer of 2007, when Hamas seized control of the Gaza Strip from the Fatah faction.
Since then, Hamas has governed the Gaza Strip, while Fatah has continued to control the West Bank from Ramallah. Further complicating the situation, Israel and Egypt, with the blessings of the Palestinian Authority, have both sealed their borders with the Gaza Strip, effectively cutting off the coastal enclave from the rest of the world.