Over a week after agreeing to a unity deal with Fatah, Hamas leaders announced Wednesday they would recognize Mahmoud Abbas as interim prime minister, pending general elections later this year.
In a joint statement from Doha, Qatar, Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh and political bureau chief Khaled Mashaal endorsed Abbas’ nomination, denying rumors of an ideological rift within the movement.
“There are no differences within the movement regarding reconciliation. The Doha Announcement is moving toward implementation,” the statement read.
Palestinian media had reported that Hamas’ Gaza leadership, primarily Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh and senior official Mahmoud Zahar, adamantly opposed Abbas’ nomination, declaring it “unconstitutional.”
According to the Palestine Information Center, a Hamas news agency, Hamas leaders will meet in Cairo next week to discuss developments within the movement. The leaders of the movement’s military wing, Ahmad Jaabari and Muhammad Deif, also endorsed the Doha declaration in a phone conversation with Khaled Mashaal, the Palestine Information Agency reported.