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Official: Abbas 'in final stages' of selecting unity govt technocrats
Published Wednesday 21/05/2014 (updated) 22/05/2014 11:19
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President Mahmoud Abbas meets with Hamas chief Khaled Mashaal
in Doha on May 5, 2014 (Reuters/Thaer Ghanaim/Handout)
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- President Mahmoud Abbas has received a list of suggested officials for the Palestinian unity government and will inaugurate the government by May 29, an official said late Tuesday.

Senior Hamas official Ahmad Yousef told Ma'an that Abbas is in "the final stages of selecting cabinet members for the technocratic government in which he will be prime minister."

The cabinet will be made up of "15 or 16" ministers, Yousef said.

He said three nonpartisan candidates have been suggested for each position and Abbas will choose one of the three.

One of the suggestions for foreign minister is Ziad Abu Amr, a Gaza-born politician who currently serves as deputy prime minister of the Palestinian Authority, Yousef told Ma'an.

The Hamas official added that various nonpartisan PA officials were likely candidates for unity government posts. However, none of the members of the current Gaza government are likely to be chosen, as they are affiliated to Hamas.

On Sunday, Hamas said that a "consensus government" would be named by the PLO and Hamas within days.

Hamas signed a reconciliation deal last month with the PLO in a surprise move which aims to overcome a years-long intra-Palestinian split.

Under their April 23 reconciliation deal, the two sides are to form an "independent government" of technocrats, headed by Abbas, paving the way for long-delayed elections.
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1 ) Mel / USA
21/05/2014 16:16
Why do I get a strange feeling that just because Hamas is out of funds &1.8 MILLION(1/2 being children)Gazan civilians are collectively punished,that they are developing just an Israeli-proxies-only club? Is this why DFLP &PFLP are not invited in,even though they're valid?Because only old & present Arab Israeli-proxies are allowed in?As long as this is for an active UNITED FREE PALESTINE & not just a larger Zionist-occupation proxy of "Good(docile)Arabs"?Priority=Israeli Occupation must END!

2 ) Patrick O'Shaughnessy / Ireland
21/05/2014 17:36
As the new government is meant to be impartial, one would hope the candidates are chosen on merit, rather than any party affiliation. That said, one hopes there will be a broad selection of candidates, with the final selectees being representative of all of Palestinian society. This means choosing from and working with all the sections and factions within Palestine. Unity government means just that, UNITY!

3 ) Confused / USA
21/05/2014 19:48
Abbas faces tough choices. If he includes Hamas officials in the new "nonpartisan" government, US law requires immediate end of aid to Palestinians. Doubtful that EU will pick up the slack. And Arab countries never truly help Palestinians. Will Abbas bring financial ruin by including Hamas? Or will he deliver "unity" without including groups identified in US law as terrorist?
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