Abbas not to visit Gaza: official

08:27, May 31, 2010      

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A senior Palestinian official on Sunday denied reports that President Mahmoud Abbas was thinking of visiting the Gaza Strip.

"Abbas will never go to Gaza as long as Hamas controls it," the official, a close aide to Abbas and a member of his Fatah party, who requested anonymity, told Xinhua.

Earlier on Sunday, local Maan news agency reported that Abbas was seriously thinking of visiting Gaza.

The official added that Abbas wants "to end Hamas' coup" which enabled the Islamic movement to take over the coastal enclave after a week of deadly street battles that ended in June 2007 with Hamas routing pro-Abbas forces and ousting Fatah.

Meanwhile, Jamal Muhissen, a member of Fatah central committee, said Fatah rejects any visit by Abbas to Gaza before a national reconciliation is reached and "the internal split is ended."

Muhissen urged Hamas to accept an Egyptian proposal for inter- Palestinian reconciliation. Hamas rejected the offer last year and Egypt suspended its efforts to end the Palestinian political impasse.

Source: Xinhua


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