Palestinians speed up Gaza handover talks amid anger at US, Israel

Under Egyptian mediation, the factions have sought to end a schism dating back to 2007, when Islamist Hamas seized Gaza in a civil war with Abbas's Fatah.

By: Reuters | Gaza | Published: December 7, 2017 4:27 pm
Palestine, Gaza, Gaza handover, Hamas, Jerusalem, United States, Israel capital Jerusalem, world news, Indian Express news Palestinian protesters burn a poster depicting US President Donald Trump and a representation of a US flag during a protest against Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, in Gaza City December 7, 2017. (Source: REUTERS)

Palestinian factions stepped up efforts on Thursday to finalise a Hamas handover of the Gaza Strip to President Mahmoud Abbas as protests broke out in the enclave against the US recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

Under Egyptian mediation, the factions have sought to end a schism dating back to 2007, when Islamist Hamas seized Gaza in a civil war with Abbas’s Fatah. A December 1 deadline for giving Gaza to Abbas was postponed to Dec. 10 amid disputes.

US President Donald Trump’s announcement on disputed Jerusalem on Wednesday infuriated Palestinians, who see the city as their future capital, prompting Hamas to call for a revolt against Israel and demand that Abbas abandon American-sponsored peace-making.

Worried that the recrimination could disrupt the reconciliation efforts, Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Al-Hamdallah and other Fatah delegates arrived in Gaza on Thursday to meet Hamas.

“This historical stage requires that we all unite and speed up the steps of uniting the homeland,” Al-Hamdallah told reporters.

After Hamas’ call for an “intifada”, or uprising, dozens of Palestinians gathered at two points on the Gaza border fence with Israel and threw rocks at soldiers on the other side.

One Palestinian was wounded by army fire, medics said. An Israeli military spokeswoman said she was checking the report.

In cities inside Gaza, thousands of Palestinians rallied, some chanting: “Death to America! Death to the fool Trump!” and burning tyres.

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  1. Ashok Amin
    Dec 7, 2017 at 7:29 pm
    Trump's decision is the Blessing in disguise to unite Hamaz and Fatah.If both wold have remained united this situation would not have come.Giving hundreds of lives has gone waste due to disparity! So is the case of Shia and Sunnis.Today world over Moslims suffer for want of unity. It is politics where brains work, not strength. Look at ISIS how it is failing.The world sympathizes peace makers not fighters in current time of technology. Not even wealth.
    1. V
      Dec 7, 2017 at 7:42 pm
      This step may not last long. Best thing for Gaza is merger with Egypt, to put itself out of misery. Another matter whether Egypt would ever touch Gaza with even a long pole.
      1. R
        Dec 7, 2017 at 11:33 pm
        I doubt it. Egypt has blockaded its border with Gaza for nearly a decade now. The Egyptians don't want anything to do with Palestinian terrorists.