Joy mixed with caution in Gaza after Palestinian unity deal

Despite all the obstacles, the reconciliation agreement reached in Cairo on Thursday between rival factions Fatah and Hamas was a serious step towards the end of a decade-long internal split of the Palestinians, according to analysts.

No details of the talks were released.

Egypt helped mediate several previous attempts to reconcile the two movements and form a power-sharing unity government in Gaza and the West Bank, where Abbas and the Fatah-led Palestinian Authority (PA) are based.

"The Rafah terminal will be improved and refurbished, and the presidential guards of the P.A. will be stationed along the Gaza borders by November 1".

A political science professor at Qatar University, Dr. Mohammed Al-Mesfer, has said that Doha considers the Palestinian reconciliation agreement between Hamas and Fatah as an achievement that serves the Palestinian cause.

Arab countries like Saudi Arabia, Oman, and Bahrain have also cheered the deal which will unify the factions and support achieving Palestinian rights, expressing appreciation for Egyptian efforts.

"We'll go to any length to implement the agreement and turn over a new leaf in the annals of our people, forever closing the book on our divisions".

He stressed that the success of the Cairo agreement requires a gradual process, serious work and a full desire by Fatah and Hamas, continuous supervision by Egypt, and most importantly, European funding and the acceptance from the United States.

The talks began on October 10 and were held at the headquarters of Egyptian intelligence in Cairo.

Egyptian chief of intelligence, Khalid Fawzi, presided over the signing as Hamas' representative, Saleh al-Arouri, and Fatah's negotiator, Azzam al-Ahmed, signed on.

Meanwhile the Al-Araby Al-Jadeed newspaper and Egyptian media published a report October 10 claiming that an Israeli delegation also arrived in Cairo at the beginning of the intra-Palestinian talks and met with top Egyptians.

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