Hamas Chief: Palestinian Unity Deal Collapsing

GAZA (Reuters) -
Hamas Iran
Yehiya Sinwar, shown here during a news conference in Gaza City in May. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)

Hamas’s leader in Gaza Yehya Al-Sinwar said on Thursday a reconciliation deal with President Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah faction was collapsing, just 10 weeks after the agreement was reached.

The rivals signed a deal brokered by Cairo on Oct. 12 after Hamas agreed to hand over administrative control of the Gaza Strip, including its border crossings with Egypt and Israel, a decade after seizing control of the enclave in a civil war.

The Hamas chief, a key architect of the unity agreement, offered a bleak outlook on Thursday, suggesting the deal could suffer a fate similar to numerous reconciliation attempts over the past decade.

“The reconciliation project is falling apart. Only a blind man can’t see that,” Sinwar said in comments published by pro-Hamas media.

One of the latest disputes came earlier this month when Hamas, according to Fatah officials, missed a milestone to complete the handover of Gaza to Abbas’s people.

Hamas says it has given up all administrative control in Gaza.

Rami Al-Hamdallah, the prime minister, said Hamas had not transferred moneys as agreed, while Hamas said Hamdallah’s government had not paid salaries in Gaza as agreed.

Fatah officials declined immediate comment.