Reconciliation talks between Hamas and Fatah in China indefinitely postponed

Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh (third right), and top official Khalem Mashaal (second right), are seen meeting with Fatah's Nasser al-Qudwa (second left) and Samir al-Mashrawi (third left) in Qatar on November 22, 2023. (Courtesy)
Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh (third right), and top official Khalem Mashaal (second right), are seen meeting with Fatah's Nasser al-Qudwa (second left) and Samir al-Mashrawi (third left) in Qatar on November 22, 2023. (Courtesy)

Reconciliation talks between Hamas and Fatah due to be held in China this month have been delayed and no new date has been set, officials of the Palestinian factions tell Reuters.

After hosting a meeting of Palestinian factions in April, China said Fatah – which is led by Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas – and Hamas had expressed the will to seek reconciliation through unity talks in Beijing. Fatah and Hamas officials had previously said the meeting would take place in mid-June.

With the factions deeply divided, analysts had held out little hope of the talks achieving a breakthrough toward a reconciliation deal that could create a unified Palestinian administration for the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, which has been controlled by the Hamas terror group since 2007.

Senior Hamas official Basem Naim, who had attended the previous meeting, tells Reuters the meeting was postponed and no new date has been set for another meeting, blaming Fatah which he says requested the delay.

Three Fatah officials confirm the postponement, speaking on condition of anonymity and saying the movement was going to issue a statement on the issue.

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