Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has sworn in a new unity government in Ramallah, the Palestinian seat of government in the Israeli-occupied West Bank.
The new government will be headed by incumbent prime minister Rami Hamdallah,
The ministers have been agreed by both Abbas’ Fatah party and by Hamas, seen as a key step towards improving the relationship between the two sides.
They have governed separately since Hamas, which won elections in 2006, ousted Fatah from Gaza in 2007.
Israel says it will not deal with any Palestinian government backed by Hamas.
Israeli Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu said ahead of the swearing-in: “Hamas is a terrorist organisation that calls for Israel’s destruction and the international community must not embrace it”.
Three of the ministers of the new Palestinian unity government were denied entry to the West Bank by Israel.
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