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Daily Archives: March 28, 2011

Fatah: President Abbas awaiting Hamas response

 

RAMALLAH, March 28, 2011 (KATAKAMI.COM / Ma’an News Agency) — There has yet to be a response from Hamas following a meeting between party members and President Mahmoud Abbas on Saturday, member of the Fatah central committee Nabil Sha’th told Ma’an.

Despite the positive sentiments exchanged, Sha’th said Monday, “Abbas is still waiting for the official response.”

Abbas, who leads the Fatah party, met with Hamas officials to discuss a proposed trip to Gaza and efforts to mend internal Palestinian division by way of the formation of a unity government.

Protests by Palestinian youth organizations which began on 14 March, demanded that leaders make real steps toward unity, prompting Prime Minister in Gaza Ismail Haniyeh to invite Abbas to Gaza for the re-launch of a unity effort.

Abbas on 16 March that he would accept the invitation, but only if he was going to Gaza to sign an agreement, adding that he would not go only for a new round of talks. Hamas officials said the suggestion amounted to impossible preconditions, adding that real discussions were necessary to ensure an enduring agreement.

The Saturday meeting, of which little is substantively known, was said to have been positive.

Sha’th echoed the praise of the meeting in his Monday statement, adding that Abbas would consider entering Gaza through the Rafah crossing in Egypt, of Israel refused to allow him access via the Erez crossing.

Israel’s prime minister has said that Abbas could choose between unity with Hamas and peace with Israel, and condemned the reunification of the Palestinian political sphere.

Since 2007, Hamas has run the government in the Gaza Strip, while the West Bank government has been controlled by Fatah. In 2006 Hamas won legislative elections, but was boycotted by much of the international community. Without international support the government folded, resulting in the creation of a unity government in early 2007, which collapsed amid infighting which neared the dimensions of a civil war.  (*)

 

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Iran gives Nowruz gift to Turkmenistan

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (R) in a meeting with Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov on Sunday in Tehran

IRAN, March 28, 2011 (KATAKAMI.COM) – — Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has presented an Iranian two-seater airplane to visiting Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov, Press TV Channel reported.

Iranian Minister of Housing and Urban Development Ali Nikzad presented the gift on behalf of Ahmadinejad to the visiting president upon his arrival at Tehran’s Mehrabad International Airport on Sunday, Fars news agency reported.

The light aircraft costs $130,000 and has a maximum speed of 300 kilometers per hour.

Earlier in March, Berdimuhamedov had signed a decree to send 1,000 tons of flour to Iran to mark the beginning of the Iranian New Year.

The decree was signed in a cabinet meeting to further expand the friendly ties between Iran and Turkmenistan and to revive the tradition of sharing foodstuff with neighbors on the eve of Nowruz.

Berdimuhamedov noted that reforms implemented in the Turkmenistan’s agriculture sector had been successful and efforts made by Turkmen farmers helped the country to harvest 1.5 million tons of wheat last year.

The Turkmen president is in Iran for the celebrations of the International Day of Nowruz in Tehran.

The second International Nowruz Celebrations was held in Tehran on Sunday.

Afghan President Hamid Karzai, Iraq President Jalal Talabani, Tajik President Emomali Rahmon, and Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan also took part in the inaugural ceremony of the event at Tehran’s Sa’adabad Historical Complex.

The International Day of Nowruz was registered on the UNESCO List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity on February 23, 2010.

The day-long event was scheduled to commemorate Nowruz as a cultural and spiritual heritage of Iran and other neighboring countries which celebrate the Persian New Year.  (*)

 
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