Palestinians celebrate appointment of head of Palestinian unity government in southern Gaza. (Photo: Abed Rahim Khatib/ Flash90)

Palestinian unity

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at Sunday’s cabinet meeting warned against recognizing a Palestinian unity government. (Photo: Marc Sellem/Flash90)

The Israeli Prime Minister warned world leaders not to recognize a Palestinian unity government that would include Hamas, which is scheduled to be announced on Monday.

At the weekly Cabinet meeting in Jerusalem on Sunday morning, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu cautioned the international community not to afford recognition to a new Palestinian government based on the recent Fatah-Hamas unity pact.

Fatah is the ruling party of the Palestinian Authority.

The reconciliation pact, made on April 23, spelled the end of the U.S.-brokered peace talks between Israel and the Palestinian Authority.

“I call on all responsible elements in the international community not to run to recognize the Palestinian government of which Hamas is a part and which rests on Hamas. Hamas is a terrorist organization that calls for the destruction of Israel and the international community must not embrace it,” the Israeli leader declared.

Palestinian Unity Government ‘Will Strengthen Terrorism,’ Netanyahu Says

A Palestinian unity regime that includes Hamas, a recognized terrorist entity, “will not strengthen peace; it will strengthen terrorism,” Netanyahu stated.

Palestinian unity

Politician and academic Rami Hamdallah was appointed head of Palestinian unity government. (Photo: Issam Ramawi/Flash90)

PA President and Fatah Chair Mahmoud Abbas on Thursday invited Rami Hamdallah, a politician and academic, to form a national unity government.

On Saturday, Abbas said the new government would be announced on Monday, in accordance with the five-week deadline set following the Fatah-Hamas reconciliation agreement on April 23. It seems, however, that disagreements still exist, as neither Fatah nor Hamas has yet published a list of designated ministers. On Sunday, Hamas acknowledged that a number of differences have not been resolved.

Abbas insists that the Palestinian unity government will “recognize Israel, denounce violence and recognize the international agreements.”

Hamas, however, has not changed its platform, which states the destruction of the State of Israel as its goal.

Palestinian Unity Partner Affirms: No Recognition of Jewish State

“Hamas will not recognize Israel,” Mousa Abu Marzouk, deputy chairman of Hamas’ political bureau, asserted on May 6, in an exclusive interview with Al-Monitor, notwithstanding the reconciliation pact with Fatah.

Palestinian unity government with Hamas

Hamas terrorists take part in a military show in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip on Thursday. (Photo: Abed Rahim Khatib/Flash90)

“This is a red line that cannot be crossed,” said Marzouk, who played an important role in achieving the Palestinian unity deal two weeks earlier.

Neither has Fatah demonstrated peaceful intentions. As recently as April 14, at a “Fatah ceremony honoring several terrorist murderers, a spokesperson for Abbas expressed admiration for the killers of numerous Israeli civilians,” Palestinian Media Watch reports. The Fatah representative “praised suicide bombers and planners of bombings and shooting attacks as ‘the beacon of our magnificent glory,’” according to WAFA, the official PA news agency.

Israel has reportedly threatened to cut any remaining ties with the PA once a Palestinian unity government is announced and to withhold the monthly transfer of funds it collects on behalf of the PA.

On Friday, a Palestinian official claimed that the U.S. administration “today sent an invitation to the prime minister [Hamdallah] to go to Washington and meet White House and Congress official.”

State Department spokesperson Jen Psaki flatly denied that any such overture had been made to Hamdallah. Asked by a reporter whether the claim “was just plain false,” she replied in the affirmative.

“There has been no invitation issued to Prime Minister Hamdallah,” Psaki asserted.

Written by: Atara Beck,
Staff Writer/Editor, United with Israel