Hamas to end Gaza administrative committee
Posted September 17
Paving the way for possible reconciliation between the West Bank and Gaza, Hamas said Sunday it would dissolve the Gaza administrative committee, allowing a unity government to work in its place and agree on general elections.
The move could potentially end a 10-year rift between the West Bank and Gaza that started when Hamas forced the Fatah-led Palestinian Authority out of the coastal enclave in 2007.
Israel and Egypt have since imposed a blockade on Gaza; Egypt intermittently opens its border crossing into Gaza.
The announcement followed indirect negotiations between Palestinian groups Fatah and Hamas in Cairo.
The Egyptian General Intelligence Services led the negotiations, according to a Hamas statement released early Sunday.
The move also comes after a series of Palestinian Authority measures designed to pressure Hamas, including reduction of electricity in Gaza and cutting of salaries.
The negotiations were "an expression of Egyptian interest in Palestinian reconciliation and ending the division, and our interest to realize the hopes of the Palestinian people by achieving national unity," Hamas said.