PA officials: any deal between Israel and Hamas exacerbates divide between Gaza and West Bank


Palestinian Authorities (PA) officials this morning revealed that the PA and Palestinian leadership have knowledge of details on a proposal for long-term calm between Hamas and Israel, allegedly presented via indirect negotiations facilitated by Qatar, Turkey and the United Nations (UN).

Sources confirmed that European parties had communicated with Palestinian officials on the subject of an agreement concerning a 5-year plan for peace, but Hamas denied holding any indirect negotiations despite the existence of remarks from some of its officials indicating the opposite.

Palestinian officials said that any agreement in Gaza would exacerbate the divide between the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, and would establish Gaza as a separate entity.

The position taken by the Palestinian officials comes after sources revealed that Hamas was planning to propose a long-term calm with Israel in return for a floating sea port.

Sources confirmed that the proposal, drawn up by Qatar, supported by Turkey in cooperation with the UN and EU states, and discussed with Hamas and Israel in the last two weeks, suggested a long-term plan for for calm covering the next 5 years until its renewal. The peace plan includes the easing of the Israeli blockade on Gaza, the acceleration of the reconstruction process and the establishment of a floating seaport importing and exporting international goods.

The sources added that the proposal has the support of many Hamas officials, and noted that it was being discussed as per the Nikolai Mladenov peace process in the Middle East. Hamas’ Mousa Abu Marzouq is the official dealing with the file in the Gaza Strip.

According to the sources, Hamas secured Israel’s agreement on the establishment of a floating seaport in Gaza after a short period of time and after concluding that the agreement would be under international censorship.

Hamas senior offical Salah al-Biredwel said that, for Hamas, the framework of the peace deal was that it must be agreed on nationally. It was not only in the hands of Hamas, and that there must also be a binding guarantee from Israel that they would commit to the conditions of the deal.

Al-Biredwel confirmed that no communication had taken place between Hamas and Egypt due to Egypt’s interference in internal affairs. This opens the field for Turkey and Qatar’s entry- preferable to Hamas due to its good relations with the two countries.

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