Topic: Middle East Conflict
TEL AVIV/GAZA, January 4 (RIA Novosti)
- Russia welcomes relaunch of Israeli and Palestinian dialogue – Foreign Ministry
- Israel announces fresh construction plans in occupied territories
- Israel releases 550 Palestinian prisoners under prisoner swap deal
- Hamas, Fatah to discuss reconciliation pact progress in Cairo - media
- Hamas vows to continue armed fight against Israel
Palestinian radical movement, Hamas criticized on Wednesday a recent Palestine-Israeli peace talks in Jordan, calling it “a strike on Hamas-Fatah rapprochement,” RIA Novosti reported.
The first in 16 months round of Palestine-Israeli direct peace talks was held on Tuesday in Jordan’s capital of Amman. The Palestinian delegation, headed by the Fatah member Saeb Erekat, submitted to Israel a list of proposals on border and security issues. Israel pledged to respond the proposals at the further joint meetings.
Hamas official however spoke out against the meeting, calling it “a strike on Hamas-Fatah rapprochement” and “a waste of time.”
“We think that these meetings are strikes on reconciliation process and national consent, especially on the Cairo agreement that had clearly outlined collective efforts against settlement construction, Jerusalem’s judaization and aggression,” Hamas leader Ismail Radwan said.
Fatah and Hamas signed a reconciliation agreement on May 4 in Cairo, ending a four-year split that began when Hamas ousted Fatah forces from the Gaza Strip in 2007. Since then, Hamas has controlled Gaza, limiting Fatah's authority to the West Bank.
The sides have agreed to hold elections and form a national unity government. The reconciliation process has been hampered, however, by a number of disagreements between Hamas and Fatah, including a failure to reach a consensus on the candidacy of prime minister in the new government.
The Palestine-Israeli talks stalled in September 2010 over disagreements on Israeli settlements’ construction in the West Bank. Palestinians said they would not resume negotiations unless the building stopped.
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In light of the present situation in the Middle East, Russia and Israel find themselves facing common challenges. Under these newly emerging situations, Russia sees its partnership with Israel as a potential asset in resolving acute regional issues. From a Russian perspective, the compatibility of Israeli and Russian interests could contribute to such a partnership.