Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi has renewed his support for the two-state solution between Israelis and Palestinians according to the 1967 borders.
Al-Sisi said during his meeting with Ronald Lauder, president of the World Jewish Congress, that reaching a Palestinian reconciliation between the two long-time rivals, Hamas and Fatah, and returning the legislative authority to take its responsibility in the Gaza Strip, will boost the peace process in the Middle East.
“Al-Sisi emphasised Egypt’s eagerness on enhancing strategic relations with the US and communicating with all different sects of American society,” a presidency statement read, adding that this “will boost bilateral efforts to restore stability and security in the Middle East.”
Meanwhile, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas revealed that a delegation of Fatah officials arrived on Sunday in Cairo to deliver their response on a suggested Egyptian initiative regarding the Palestinian reconciliation.
“We have received a suggestion on the Palestinian reconciliation from the Egyptian brothers, hence tomorrow (Sunday) a delegation will head to Cairo with a clear stance concerning the issue,” read a statement.
Abbas insisted that they will not change their standpoint, which was agreed in October last year, as Fatah and Hamas reached a deal, brokered by Egypt, to end the eleven-year division based on Rami Hamdallah’s government taking over the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip. However, the efforts were in vain.
A new Egyptian initiative, which was not officially declared yet by any of the concerned parties, reportedly aimed at reaching an agreement between the two Palestinian factions. Hamas reportedly declared its support for the initiative.
“Reaching a Palestinian reconciliation will not be achieved unless the National Unity government takes its responsibility and complete powers to rule Gaza, as well as conducting general elections, so that the people have the say (in their future),” Abbas said on Saturday at the meeting of the executive committee of the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) in Ramallah.
In October last year, Hamas and Fatah signed a reconciliation accord after Hamas agreed to hand over the administration of Gaza to the Fatah-backed government. Hamas has been in control of the Gaza Strip since 2007.
The last Palestinian legislative election was in 2006, when Hamas claimed a sweeping victory with 76 of the 132 seats in the chamber, which sparked a crack between the two Palestinian factions.