Hamas And Fatah Moving Towards Reconciliation

Events in the Middle East are slowly but surely moving toward changes which either will result in attainment of some form of peacefully resolution of the Palestine-Israel conflict or an escalation of violence. Hamas and Fatah are in the early stages of efforts to end their year long dispute and result in a possible coalition government which is united on basic goals of achieving peace with Israel. On June 6, President Abbas of the Palestinian Authority indicated a willingness to work with Hamas and his words were welcomed in the Gaza Strip which is the center of Hamas power. A few dozen Hamas activists held in Fatah jails have been released and names of all those held by Hamas and Fatah are being gathered in order to work out their release from jail.

There is some talk of a national coalition government composed of technocrats and independents who would run things until elections were held for a new legislature and president of the Palestinian Authority. These changes raise issues for Israel which has refused to recognize Hamas, but, apparently is willing to hammer out a cease fire in Gaza with the group. Most experts believe a Palestinian government wants Israel to accept its 1967 border, allow East Jerusalem to be the capital of Palestine, and work out some resolution of the refugee question. The good news is there are fewer demands for return of all refugees.