Ramallah residents express cautious optimism over Hamas-Fatah unity agreement

World Today

The reconciliation agreement’s between two Rival Palestinian factions, Fatah and Hamas, has key points call for the Fatah-dominated Palestinian Authority to take control over Gaza’s borders from Hamas.

In exchange, crippling sanctions on Gaza’s two million residents will be lifted. It sounds promising, but in the Palestinian Authority’s seat Ramallah there’s doubt-riddled speculation.

CGTN’s Stephanie Freid reports from Ramallah.

Maram, a resident of Ramallah, put it this way: “When you see something great you say, ‘Yeah it’s great, I hope it will last forever.’ And then in a moment of silence you think about it, ‘What if it does not last forever? ‘”

Another resident, Basel, said, “At the end they will have a point that they separate because two different mentalities.”

The widespread speculation is that Hamas was backed into the deal.

When Gulf States blockaded and isolated Qatar in June—partially for funding Hamas—support from that country dried up.

Thursday’s deal signing gives Hamas a chance for political survival.

It also puts pressure on Israel. With reconciliation, the two factions can present a unified front for peace negotiations and Palestinian statehood.

“The whole world has been demanding that Palestinians get unified,” said Mustafa Barghouti, a member of the Palestine Liberation Organization’s (PLO) Executive Committee.

“Now we are getting unified. It is now the duty of the whole world—the U.S., Europe, the UN and all nations of the world—to immediately support Palestinian unity.”

An Israeli delegation was said to be present in Cairo leading up to the signing, but did not release any official response.

In the past, Israel has opposed any involvement by Hamas in the Palestinian Authority because Hamas does not recognize Israel’s right to exist.