Hamas won’t be part of new Palestinian Authority gov’t, says PA official

Riyad al-Maliki says Palestinian Authority needs ‘technocratic’ government to replace outgoing leadership, says Hamas understands this.

By World Israel News Staff

Hamas will not be part of the new Palestinian Authority government, the PA’s foreign affairs minister said Wednesday, claiming that Hamas’ leadership understands the need to keep the Islamist terror group out of the new government.

The entire Palestinian Authority government submitted its resignation this week, including Prime Minister Mohammed Shtayyeh.

The move is part of a U.S.-backed effort to create a new, reformed PA leadership positioned to reassert control over the Gaza Strip after the current war between Israel and Hamas.

While Shtayyeh said that the new PA government would seek to form a government with the Hamas, Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki told a press conference at the sidelines of the 55th session of the Human Rights Council in Geneva Wednesday that Hamas cannot be part of the new “technocratic” government which will be formed.

“The time now is not for a national coalition government,” Maliki told reporters, claiming that Hamas leaders understand the need to keep the Gaza-based terror group out of the new government.

“The time now is not for a government where Hamas will be part of it, because, in this case, then it will be boycotted by a number of countries, as happened before.”

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“We don’t want to be in a situation like that. We want to be accepted and engaging fully with the international community.”

Despite al-Maliki’s comments, other senior PA officials have indicated they would either seek Hamas’ inclusion in the new government, or accept Hamas leadership should it win in an election.

Palestinian Authority spokesman Nabil Abu Rudeineh said that PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas would accept the results of a future election which would allow Hamas to retain power in the Strip.

Ramallah is “prepared to hold general elections, and if Hamas wins, the president will hand over the Authority,” Abu Rudeineh told Al Arabiya News.