Unity of Palestinians Chance for Peace in Region: Experts

Azerbaijan, Baku, 6 June /corr. Trend   E.Tariverdiyeva, R.Hafizoglu / The challenge by the President of the Palestinian Administration, Mahmud Abbas, to peace with HAMAS movement is possibly the only way of peacefully settling the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. "After reaching a peaceful agreement between the leading Palestinian forces, finally most of problems accumulated for long years will be settled and possibly long-expected peace will come to the region," HAMAS Press Secretary, Sami Abu Zuhri, said.   

The President of the Palestinian Administration, Mahmud Abbas, called the Organization of Islamic Resistance HAMAS to reach a peaceful agreement, Al-Jazeera television reported on 5 June. For long years, Abbas had not given consent to talks with HAMAS, accusing the organization of illegal seizure of the power in Gaza Sector. 

"HAMAS Movement highly assessed Abbas's challenge on peaceful agreement," HAMAS Press Secretary, Sami Abu Zuhri,  reported to Trend by telephone from Gaza on 6 June.   

"Mahmud Abbas's preparedness to the peaceful talks is the result of long years efforts of both sides," Abu Zuhri said. According to the Press Secretary, giving consent to peaceful talks, Abbas let the USA and all supporters of Israel understand that the Palestinians will not move through their regulations. "I think that it will be a successful and long-term peaceful agreement," Abu Zuhri said.   

"President Abbas has realized that Israel is not interested in good faith negotiations for a comprehensive peace settlement with Palestine and that the Bush administration will side with Israel for the rest of its term in office until January 2009," politician of University of Illinois (USA), Francis A. Boyle, said.

According to him, it does not appear from their recent public statements giving blank-check support to Israel that McCain and Obama will be much better than Bush when it comes to the Palestinians. The politician said that since his overtures for peace have been decisively rebuffed by Israel and America, President Abbas has concluded that the best alternative is to return to re-establishing a Provisional Government of National Unity involving all elements of the Palestinian Resistance. 

"Based upon my involvement in the Middle East Peace Process for the past two decades, Israel has never demonstrated one iota of good faith when it comes to peace negotiations with the Palestinians," Boyle said.

According to him, their existential need now is to re-establish a working and effective Provisional Government of National Unity, which in turn can then design a strategy for comprehensive political, diplomatic, economic and military resistance to Israel's most brutal colonial military occupation that has been inflicted upon the Palestinians.

"Right now it is critical for all Palestinians to unite into a Provisional Government of National Unity in order to break Israel's genocidal siege of Gaza with the support of the United States and Europe," the expert added.

American expert Gawdat Bahqat considers that despite ideological and political disagreements between the Palestinian Authority and Hamas, Abbas prefers to negotiate with Hamas for at least two reasons.

"First, As a Palestinian leader, Abbas would like to unite all Palestinians under his leadership," Director of Middle East Center of the University of Pennsylvania, Gawdat Bahqat, reported to Trend via e-mail on 6 June. According to him, there is no reason to doubt that all Palestinian leaders, regardless of their political orientations, would like to strengthen unity among all Palestinians.

"Second, Abbas and his administration are engaged in crucial negotiations with the Israel government," the expert said.

Bahqat considers that Bush administration has repeatedly expressed its desire to conclude a peace agreement between the Israelis and Palestinians before President Bush leaves office. "An agreement with Hamas would substantially strengthen Abbas' stand in the negotiations with the Israeli government and Bush administration," the politician said.

Director of MAAH News Agency of Palestine, Nasser Lahham, considers that Mahmud Abbas's consent to peaceful talks with HAMAS is the greatest achievement of both sides over the recent period. "The Palestinians had needed such a peaceful agreement for already long," Lahham told Trend by telephone from Ramallah on 6 June.

According to Lahham, Abbas is a very wise politician and knows what statement to make in time. "Mahmud Abbas's statement on preparedness for peaceful agreement with HAMAS was made after the U.S. Presidential candidate Barack Obama said that Jerusalem should remain as integral capital of Israel," the expert added.

HAMAS Organization was established on 14 December 1987 in Gaza city by Sheikh Ahmed Yasin as part of the Muslim Brotherhood Organization. The goal of the Movement is to establish independent Islamic Palestinian State 'from Jordan to Mediterranean Sea'.

The correspondent can be contacted at: [email protected]

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