Rami Hamdallah, prime minister of the Palestinian Authority, and General Majid Faraj, head of the PA’s intelligence services, survived an assassination attempt earlier this week. While it is unclear who orchestrated the attempt, it has dealt a possibly-irrevocable blow to possible reconciliation between the Palestinian factions of Hamas and Fatah. Hamdallah is unlikely to return to Gaza, where the attack occurred, and Hamas – imagined to be behind the attack, or at least complicit in it – have turned Faraj into an even more determined rival.
Talks between Fatah and Hamas have hit a dead end. Hamas wants to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to handle the ongoing civil operation of Gaza without subordinating their military forces to the PA. Fatah fears that Hamas will attempt a hostile takeover, ultimately taking control of the West Bank. The explosion on Tuesday has exacerbated tensions between the factions.
While Fatah suspects Hamas in the attack, Hamas has – unsurprisingly – blamed Israel.
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