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  Wednesday, April 1, 2020
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Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said Wednesday dialogue with Hamas is only possible if the radical Islamist group gives up control over the Gaza Strip
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said Wednesday dialogue with Hamas is only possible if the radical Islamist group gives up control over the Gaza Strip. Hamas has controlled Gaza since the June coup, when it ousted the pro-presidential Fatah movement. Abbas has since disbanded a coalition with the group and formed a new government in the West Bank, which enjoys international backing. Hamas has called for a new coalition with Fatah. "Hamas must reinstate the Gaza Strip in a position it was before the coup," Egypt's MENA agency quoted Abbas as saying following talks in Alexandria with President Hosni Mubarak, who has joined other moderate Arab states in supporting Abbas. Abbas said Hamas's seizure of the enclave was destructive for the Palestinians' quest for statehood. The Palestinian leader's visit to the Egyptian Mediterranean city comes two days after his first meeting in the West Bank with Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert. At the talks in Jericho, Olmert called for a swift resumption of negotiations on establishing a Palestinian state. Abbas said he had briefed Mubarak on his meetings with the Israeli premier, as well as U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, who came to promote a Middle East peace conference proposed by U.S. President George W. Bush, likely to be held in November and involve Israeli and moderate Palestinian officials. Abbas also gave the results of his visit to Moscow in late July, when the Kremlin pledged its backing to Abbas as the legitimate Palestinian leader, claiming it had downgraded ties with Hamas, although maintained contacts with the goal of influencing the group directly and indirectly. Western nations have moved to isolate Hamas, which has refused to recognize Israel and renounce violence
Print Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said Wednesday dialogue with Hamas is only possible if the radical Islamist group gives up control over the Gaza Strip Bookmark Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said Wednesday dialogue with Hamas is only possible if the radical Islamist group gives up control over the Gaza Strip

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