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Before… the first step
By: Mohammad Al-Sahli
October 27, 2016

The return of the Haniyeh's government means firstly, shooting the mercy bullet on the «Ashatea’s Agreement».

When the head of the political bureau of Hamas, Khaled Meshaal, said that the group erred in several attitudes, including monopolizing power in Gaza. The observers considered that this statement may be an indication that Hamas intends to make critical review for the course of its performance during the last period.

Maybe the big changes that have taken place in the region pushed in to this direction, especially what relates to the retreating of many positions of the Islamic movements from the branches of the Muslim Brotherhood and their exposition to successive setbacks starting from the displace of the Egyptian President from the Muslim Brotherhood party Mohamed Morsi.

But the most important, is a reflection of what was done by «Hamas» in Gaza on the
Palestinian situation as a whole, and what the division led to from disasters at all levels, and the largest share of these disasters was for the people of the stip.

While the observers were watching the attempts of «Hamas» for the openness on regional forces that it quarreled with in the previous years, they were surprised by the orientation of the movement, through its bloc in the «legislative council», to re-assign its government in Gaza.

It can be said that the experience of the «consensus» government was not successful, especially towards the Gaza Strip’s private files. The reason is that the «Ashatea’s Agreement» which gave birth to this government (2014) was packed with a lot of unresolved details between Fatah and Hamas; specifically about Hamas employees and the unification of the institutions between the West Bank and Gaza.

In spite of the recognition (in theory) about the power of the «consensus» government on the Gaza Strip, but the reins of power remained however, with Hamas, as was the case before. The many negotiating stations did not succeed in preventing gravitations, Media battles rounds and the arresting campaigns between both sides of the division.

It was evident, that the solution to the division's dilemma in terms of the restoration of unity comes across two ways, firstly through the implementation of the comprehensive national dialogue decisions, or and here is the second way, to resort to the people directly through the general elections for the institutions of the PLO and the PA based on the full proportional representation law.

Therefore, when all the Palestinian case’s components announced their approval for the municipal elections, which was planned to take place on the eighth of this month, the hopes escalated that these elections will be an entrance to end the division and an introduction for the presidential and legislative elections and for the Palestinian National Council and its institutions; and this means that the Palestinian political system is stuck in the mud in front of an opportunity to rebuild it again.

With the formation of «Democratic Alliance» from five parties, a serious chance has appeared to get out of the bipolarity case, represented by Fatah and Hamas in the Palestinian political scene, which has increased the importance of the elections and their role in the start of ending the division path.

But what has hampered the implementation of the comprehensive dialogues decisions, was the same which hampered the municipal elections, though it seemed as a delay formula for four months. Both sides of division realize that changing the balance of the existing powers in the Palestinian case would not be for the interest of either of them, this along with the fear of each other's success in invading its «stronghold», which resulted the raging of mutual accusations, which clearly indicates that each of them deals with the geographical area «governed» by it as a zone of influence.

The partisan interest is what drives Fatah to look at the national entitlements, including the elections, from an angle that represents its internal situation first and last. The partisan interest also, is what pushes Hamas to announce its intention to exit from the «consensus» government through the restoration of its former formula in ruling the Gaza Strip.

A number of observers may have seen this step of Hamas as a multi-directions message at the national and regional levels. There are some parties pledged to pay the costs of solving the crisis of Hamas employees which is in its first place; at a time when these parties are seeking to be a supervisor to the process of reconciliation between Fatah and Hamas; by putting the «Ashatea’s Agreement» out of its stalled case. Consequently, the public exiting from the consensus government, means shooting the mercy bullet on this agreement; and so, any efforts will be made by these parties, toward the issue of reconciliation, will start again from the first step... and perhaps before it.

The recommendation of «Hamas» bloc in the «legislative» in activating its government in Gaza, at a time that Fatah is sinking in organizing its own affairs at the gate of its seventh conference, and on the rhythm of the «advices» of some Arab capitals to return Dahlan and those with him to the ranks of the movement prior to the conference.

Practically, nothing happens that make Hamas believes that it can rule the Gaza Strip as by the previous formula without social and economic crises, as it the case after years of single ruling of the stip. What was being talked about when the reconciliation between Ankara and Tel Aviv, as a chance to break the siege, was just a media promotion no more, and the bestowal on the Gaza Strip with aids is related to the «refinery» of the crossings with the occupation. But all that does not reduce the seriousness of the implementation of the «Hamas» bloc’s recommendation in the «legislative» in this regard.

First, it opens the door once again on the worst division scenes that were regretfully experienced by the Palestinian people over the past years.

The importance of talking about the elections with its different stages aimed to the salvation of the deadlock situation, when criticizing the performance of each of Gaza and Ramallah’s authorities within their «special» geography, as the problem is in the entire Palestinian political system and the reflection of its crises on the all Palestinian people in all regions of its presence.

It’s repeatedly proven that the bilateral agreements will not succeed in ending the division, because it is governed by the quotas system, which depends on the equations of examining the sources of power between the two movements, and whenever it seemed that there is a change in the level of strength and weakness level in one of them, the demanding starts to the re-distribution according to the current time’s equations. The most important is that the two movements do not discuss their private affair, but it comes to the national public affair and the future of the Palestinian people and their rights. For this reason, the comprehensive national dialogue and the commitment to the implementation of its decisions is the only entrance to correct the Palestinian situation.

Notes: Mohammad Al-Sahli is the Editor in Chief of Al-Hourriah newspaper, the official speaker of the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine
Translated by: Al-Hourriah English staff

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