Hindustan Times ST (Jaipur) - - World - As­so­ci­ated Press let­ters@hin­dus­tan­times.com

The leader of Ha­mas said on Thurs­day that his group has reached an agree­ment with the ri­val Fatah party of Pales­tinian Pres­i­dent Mah­moud Ab­bas af­ter Egyp­tian-bro­kered talks about the terms of con­trol of the Gaza Strip.

Is­mail Haniyeh said in a state­ment that de­tails would be an­nounced later in the day in Cairo. The de­vel­op­ment fol­lows two days of Ha­mas-Fatah talks in Cairo un­der what Haniyeh called “gen­er­ous Egyp­tian aus­pices.”

The talks marked the lat­est in a se­ries of at­tempts to end a decade-long Pales­tinian ter­ri­to­rial, po­lit­i­cal and ide­o­log­i­cal split that has crip­pled Pales­tinian state­hood as­pi­ra­tions. In 2007, a year af­ter win­ning Pales­tinian par­lia­ment elec­tions, the Is­lamic mil­i­tant Ha­mas evicted Ab­bas’ Western-backed Pales­tinian Author­ity from Gaza. Ab­bas was left with au­ton­o­mous en­claves in the Is­raeli-oc­cu­pied West Bank.

Over the past decade, each side deep­ened its con­trol over its ter­ri­tory, mak­ing it in­creas­ingly dif­fi­cult to forge com­pro­mises.

Ab­bas has in­sisted that he will only re­as­sume con­trol of Gaza if Ha­mas hands over power. Ha­mas, in turn, has said that it will not dis­arm — even if it is will­ing to give Ab­bas con­trol of the Gaza govern­ment.

Stick­ing points in past and cur­rent talks in­cluded con­trol over the arse­nal of Ha­mas’ armed wing, the fate of thou­sands of Ha­mas’ pub­lic ser­vants, ar­range­ments for Gaza’s border cross­ings and a re­struc­tur­ing of the se­cu­rity forces. The union rep­re­sent­ing Ha­mas-al­lied civil ser­vants in Gaza said a com­mit­tee would dis­cuss how to in­te­grate into a new govern­ment.


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