Hamas ready to hand the Gaza strip, Palestine

Hamas paves way for Palestinian elections as it signals readiness to end Fatah feud

Hamas added that it was also willing to hold talks with Palestinian President Mahmud Abbas' movement, Fatah, to end a decade-long split, AFP reported. The deal was not clear whether Hamas is ready to place its security forces under Abbas' control - a key sticking point that has scuttled past reconciliation attempts.

The Palestinian movement of Hamas said it chose to dissolve its administrative committee and expressed readiness to launch talks with the Fatah movement, Hamas said in a statement.

The unity government was formed in the summer of 2014 during Israel's assault on the beseiged enclave, but has been inactive since.

The announcement comes after days of indirect negotiations between rival Palestinian factions Fatah and Islamist Hamas in Cairo.

MENA said that Egypt welcomes the stances of the Fatah and Hamas movements regarding Egyptian efforts to unite the Palestinian people and end the current division.

Israel's increasing restrictions on exit permits for Gaza residents, an escalating sewage crisis that is contaminating the strip's beaches, and high levels of unemployment, are all contributing to a mounting sense of exhaustion in the strip.

In 2007 a conflict between Fatah, then dominating party in Palestine, and Hamas led to the split of the Palestinian Authority and Hamas taking over the Gaza Strip.

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Hamas has been weakened by an Israeli and Egyptian blockade, three wars with Israel and global isolation.

Last Tuesday, Fatah Central Committee Member Azzam al-Ahmad, who is now leading the Fatah delegation in Cairo, said if Hamas disbands its administrative committee, Abbas would lift its punitive measures against it.

"As a result of having Fatah delegation in Cairo, Hamas has been put under the pressure of Egypt and Fatah delegation to immediately respond to Abbas call of dissolving its administrative committee, and it really did and agreed to dissolve it", said Oukal. Abbas has also cut the salaries of thousands of former PA employees, many his supporters, who he had instructed not to work for the Hamas government.

However, Bjorn was skeptical if Hamas's announcement on Sunday would lead to a full-fledged reconciliation between Hamas and Fatah.

The group said in an emailed press statement that it would dissolve a disputed administrative committee in Gaza and wants Abbas' government to come to the coastal enclave.

United Nations officials have urged Israel to lift its decade-long blockade of Gaza.

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