The Palestinian Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh has reiterated his hopes for a government of national unity for the Palestinians. He has brushed aside President Mahmoud Abbas’s comments that talks have to start from scratch. Abbas plans to travel to Gaza early this week to resume talks he froze a week ago. Palestinians hope the formation of a unity government will prompt Western powers to ease an aid embargo. Meanwhile, in a direct challenge to Abbas, four militant groups have threatened to attack any Palestinian unity government that recognises Israel.
Abu Abir, spokesman for the Popular Resistance Committees, said: “Any coming (Palestinian unity) government that recognises Israel and its right to exist will be a legitimate target. We will fight it and deal with it as an extension of the Zionist occupation.”
The Palestinian President said efforts to forge a national unity government were back at square one on Saturday following talks with Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak in Cairo.