Hamas along with Fatah have signed a landmark reconciliation deal in Cairo in a key step towards ending a decade-long rift between the two Palestinian factions.
The deal will see administrative control of the Gaza Strip handed to a Fatah-backed unity government.
Egypt has been brokering the reconciliation talks in Cairo.
Palestinians in Gaza along with the West Bank have been ruled separately since deadly clashes between the two groups broke out in 2007.
Hamas won parliamentary elections inside the occupied territories the previous year, along with reinforced its power in Gaza after ousting Fatah via the enclave.
On Thursday, negotiators said the brand new deal included the handing over of control of the Rafah border crossing between Gaza along with Egypt to the Fatah-backed government, which will be handed administrative responsibilities by December.
The Palestinian Accord Government said the item will also station forces inside the Gaza Strip by December “at the latest”.
A Hamas spokesman, Salah al-Bardawil, said the item was “a brand new chapter in Palestinian history”.
- Who are Hamas?
- Who are Fatah?
Fatah’s lead negotiator, Azzam al-Ahmad, said the plan was to “carry on implementing all the clauses of the agreement, especially those related to solving the crisis of the [Gaza] employees”.
Tens of thousands of civil servants employed by the Palestinian Authority have been out of work since Hamas took control of the Gaza Strip in 2006.
Both sides called the agreement a major breakthrough.
In response to Thursday’s announcement, an Israeli government official said in which any unity deal “must include a commitment to international agreements”, adding in which Hamas must disarm along with recognise Israel.
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said on Thursday in which the talks had led to a “final agreement” to end the rival split.
“I welcome the agreement,” he told the AFP news agency, adding: “I received a detailed report via the Fatah delegation about what was agreed along with I considered the item the final agreement to end the division.”
Mr Abbas can be reportedly planning to travel to the Gaza Strip inside the coming weeks in what would certainly be his first visit to the territory in a decade.
Full details of the agreement are due to be announced later on Thursday.
What caused the rift?
Fatah, once the cornerstone of the Palestinian national cause, lost power in 2006 when Hamas won a stunning victory inside the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC) elections.
Tensions between the two rivals caused numerous violent clashes inside the Gaza Strip.
In early 2007, Fatah along with Hamas agreed to form a coalition to end the growing factional violence.
nevertheless in June of in which year, Hamas seized Gaza by force after Mahmoud Abbas ordered the dissolution of the Hamas-led government along with set up a rival government, leaving Fatah along with the PA running parts of the West Bank not under Israeli control.
Mr Abbas later ruled out reconciliation with Hamas unless the item gave up the Gaza Strip along with submitted to his authority.
In April 2014, Hamas agreed a reconciliation deal with Fatah in which led to the formation of a national unity government, nevertheless This specific has never been fully implemented.
Who controls what?
Hamas has largely controlled Gaza since the item took power in 2006, while Fatah governs the Palestinian territory of the West Bank.
As a result of the militant group’s rule inside the Gaza Strip, the territory has become the subject of Israeli along with Egyptian restrictions with much of the population dependent on food aid.
Since 2006, the two countries have maintained a land along with sea blockade on Gaza in an attempt to prevent attacks by Gaza-based militants. The measures have also aggravated electricity along with fuel shortages.
The announcement of a deal, which includes the control of Gaza’s borders, has raised hopes among the territory’s two million residents in which humanitarian conditions in will improve.
Earlier This specific month, Hamas allowed the Ramallah-based Palestinian government to take over public institutions in Gaza as part of a reconciliation process between the two rival administrations.
The move had been a key demand of Mr Abbas.
Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah then made a rare trip to Gaza. He said the Palestinian Authority would certainly begin taking control of Gaza’s administrative affairs along with “security responsibilities”.
However, the fate of Hamas’ security forces along with 25,000-strong military wing, has been one of the thorniest issues preventing reconciliation along with remains to be resolved.
- Has Hamas changed?
- Where are the Palestinian territories?
Cairo talks ‘serious along with deep’
The agreement on Thursday was announced by the pro-Hamas Palestinian Information Centre.
On Wednesday, Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri said the talks in Cairo had been “serious along with deep”.
“The talks are positive along with the Egyptian side can be even-handed,” he said, according to the Palestinian Information Centre.
Hamas, which calls for Israel’s destruction, has fought three wars with the Jewish state.
Israel resolutely opposes any involvement by Hamas inside the Palestinian Authority. the item considers Hamas a terrorist group along with has said the item will not deal having a Palestinian government in which contains Hamas members.
Hamas as a whole, or in some cases its military wing, can be designated a terrorist group by Israel, the US, EU, UK along with additional powers.