Netanyahu: Israel will not cut ties with PA over unity deal

Netanyahu: Israel will not cut ties with PA over unity deal

Netanyahu: Israel will not cut ties with PA over unity deal

Israel's top-level security cabinet on Tuesday said the government would no longer hold peace talks with the Palestinian Authority following the reconciliation agreement it reached with Hamas unless the terror group renounced terrorism and recognized the Jewish state.

The security cabinet decision stopped short of what one of its members - Education Minister Naftali Bennett -had publicly demanded in recent days: severing connection with the PA as a result of the pact that he said turned the PA into a "terrorist authority".

The other conditions set by the security cabinet for continued negotiations with the PA are that it must continue to thwart Hamas terrorist activity and the building of terrorist infrastructure in Judea and Samaria, that Hamas be cut off from Iran and that funds and humanitarian supplies will flow into Gaza only through the PA and other internationally recognized mechanisms set up for this goal.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu informed his security cabinet yesterday that whilst Israel would not recognise the reconciliation of Palestinian factions Fatah and Hamas, it would do nothing to thwart the deal, according to Haaretz.

Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas's Fatah, based in the occupied West Bank, and Hamas, which runs the Gaza Strip, signed the unity agreement in Cairo on Thursday.

"There are no secret clauses in the reconciliation understanding, and what the occupation published on the resistance halting in the West Bank is not true", said senior Hamas spokesperson Husam Badran, in an interview with the Palestinian news site Quds Network.

The Palestinian Authority, now dominated by Fatah, is due to resume control of the Gaza Strip by December 1 under the deal, however previous such attempts at reconciliation have repeatedly failed. "If you give them a week without Israel, the PA would implode because Hamas would take over as it did in the Gaza Strip".

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