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Explosion Hits Convoy of Palestinian PM

Hamas accused of trying to assassinate Hamdallah

(Newser) - An explosion struck the convoy of the Palestinian prime minister Tuesday as he was making a rare visit to Gaza, in what his Fatah party called an assassination attempt it blamed on Gaza militants. The explosion went off shortly after the convoy entered Gaza through the Erez crossing with Israel.... More »

'Furious' Israel Yanks Peace Talks

Move follows Hamas, Fatah decision to reunite

(Newser) - The Israeli government says it has decided to halt peace talks with the Palestinians in response to yesterday's unity agreement between rival Palestinian factions, abruptly ending the nine-month peace initiative brokered by Secretary of State John Kerry. The negotiating period had been set to end next Tuesday, though both... More »

Hamas, Fatah to Reunite

Israel says it will end peace process

(Newser) - Palestine's long-feuding Hamas and Fatah factions have agreed to reunite, they announced today, following a meeting in Gaza yesterday. The groups plan to form a unity government in the next five weeks, and then hold national elections in six months, the Jerusalem Post reports. This isn't the first... More »

Palestinian PM Resigns After Bitter Dispute

Departure could spell trouble for President Abbas

(Newser) - Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad resigned today, leaving the Palestinians without one of their most moderate and well-respected voices just as the US is launching a new push for Mideast peace. A statement from the official Palestinian news agency Wafa said President Mahmoud Abbas met with Fayyad late in the... More »

Israel Arrests 25, Including Palestinian Lawmakers

Hamas condemns roundup in West Bank

(Newser) - Israel today arrested three Palestinian lawmakers amid a roundup of 25 Hamas members in the West Bank, Global Post reports. Israel didn't explain the arrests but has discussed plans to detain more suspected militants in the wake of civil unrest , notes Breitbart . One of the detainees, still unidentified, was... More »

Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood to Hamas, Fatah: Work It Out

Moderate shift seen to strengthen Palestinian position

(Newser) - As the Muslim Brotherhood takes power in Egypt, it is already exerting its influence by pressuring Hamas, the militant group that controls Gaza, to compromise with Fatah, the Western-backed party that runs the West Bank, reports the New York Times . The Brotherhood had previously had a close relationship with Hamas,... More »

Hamas, Fatah Agree to Unite

And this time, they mean it

(Newser) - Palestine's rival factions, Hamas and Fatah, say they've finally agreed on a deal for a unified government, hoping to present a united front in their negotiations with Israel. Of course, they said the same thing last spring . That deal hit the rocks because the sides couldn't agree... More »

Egypt Bolsters Relations With Iran, Hamas

Government will end Gaza blockade

(Newser) - As Egypt regroups after Hosni Mubarak’s exit, it is realigning its diplomatic ties: Officials plan to end the Gaza border blockade and forge closer ties with Iran and Hamas. As elections approach, officials say they’re working toward policies that better fit public opinion; meanwhile, they hope to regain... More »

Hamas, Fatah Strike Deal on Palestinian Government

But Israel may not deal with Hamas

(Newser) - Palestinians have reached initial agreement on reuniting their rival governments in the West Bank and Gaza, a step that would remove a main obstacle in the way of peace efforts with Israel. Fatah and Hamas officials said the plan, brokered by Egypt, calls for the formation of a single caretaker... More »

Palestinians Try Less Violent Resistance

Peaceful protests, boycott of Israeli products gain traction

(Newser) - Burnt out on both armed struggle and diplomacy, Palestinian leaders are looking to a third path: political resistance that seeks to be non-violent. The Fatah-dominated Palestinian Authority's new strategy to try to end Israeli occupation includes unarmed protest marches, boycott campaigns against goods produced by Israeli settlers, and illegal tree-planting... More »

Palestinians' Abbas May Not Seek Reelection

Move could be a feint to jump-start peace negotiations

(Newser) - Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas will not seek reelection next year, insiders say. Abbas has seen his credibility with Palestinians damaged during peace negotiations with the US and Israel, now stalled. “The president insists on not running in the upcoming election,” an official tells the Guardian, though some believe... More »

Palestine Says Hope in Obama 'Evaporated'

Abbas' Fatah Party accuses president of caving to Israel

(Newser) - The Palestinian president's political party says all hopes in the Obama administration have "evaporated," accusing the White House of caving to pressure from the pro-Israel lobby and backing off a demand to freeze Jewish settlement. Mahmoud Abbas' Fatah Party also accused the US of failing to set a... More »

Hamas-Police Gunfight Kills 6

(Newser) - Palestinian forces loyal to President Mahmoud Abbas stormed a Hamas hideout in the West Bank and set off a fierce gun battle that left six dead today, the worst violence since the factions fought a pitched battle over Gaza 2 years ago. Militants lobbed grenades and fired automatic weapons to... More »

PLO Leader Killed in Lebanon Roadside Blast

(Newser) - Top PLO official Kamal Medhat and at least three of his bodyguards were killed by a roadside bomb near a refugee camp in southern Lebanon today, security officials tell al-Jazeera. Television footage showed Medhat’s car being blasted into a large crater. A Fatah spokesman said Medhat had been “... More »

Palestinian PM Steps Down to Pave Way for Power Share

Move aimed at easing Palestinian reconciliation

(Newser) - Palestine’s prime minister submitted his resignation today, a move that could help pave the way for an elusive power-sharing deal between Fatah moderates and Hamas militants. Salam Fayyad's decision was meant to build confidence before Palestinian reconciliation talks resume Tuesday in Cairo. He was appointed by Western-backed Palestinian President... More »

Clinton Visits West Bank, Names Syrian Envoys

(Newser) - Hillary Clinton met separately with the Palestinian president and prime minister in the West Bank today, after sitting down with Israeli leaders yesterday, and announcing the appointment of two senior envoys to Syria. Palestinian leaders implored Clinton to push for a freeze on expanding Israeli West Bank settlements, and open... More »

Mitchell Calls for Lasting Peace as New Violence Hits Gaza

18 injured in Israeli counterstrike

(Newser) - Fresh violence in Gaza today threatened the fragile ceasefire as George Mitchell called for a lasting truce between Hamas and Israel, AFP reports. An Israeli air strike wounded 18 Palestinians, including 11 children and a pregnant woman. The Israeli army said it was targeting a Hamas policeman responsible for a... More »

Israel Warns Attacks Will Intensify

(Newser) - Israel dropped leaflets on the Gaza strip today warning inhabitants of an escalation in the 2-week offensive against Hamas militants, the BBC reports. The leaflets assured civilians that the action was against “Hamas and the terrorists only” and urged people to stay away from military targets. The development could... More »

Hamas Support Grows in West Bank

Palestinians call for tougher stance from president

(Newser) - As violence continues in Gaza, support for Hamas is growing in the Fatah-controlled West Bank, the New York Times reports. Though demonstrations of solidarity with Hamas have thus far been relatively small, West Bank residents see Gaza as “part of themselves,” writes Steven Erlanger. Still, there’s little... More »

How Far Does Israel Go? Each Answer Carries Risks

If group falls, Jewish state may be responsible for problematic Gaza

(Newser) - The ground offensive against Hamas raises all kinds of vexing questions for Israel, writes Ethan Bronner in the New York Times. Perhaps the biggest is this: When the smoke clears, who's going to be in charge of Gaza? If Israel sticks to a limited military aim of knocking out Hamas'... More »

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