[News] Prime Minister Haniya: stop blood shed and do not play into the hands of external forces

Anti-Imperialist News news at freedomarchives.org
Wed Dec 20 11:27:26 EST 2006

Prime Minister Haniya: stop blood shed and do not play into the hands 
of external forces

Kristen Ess
Wednesday, 20 December 2006

Prime Minister Ismail Haniya addressed the public Tuesday night, 
stressing the need to "maintain unity at home and abroad." He said 
that national dialogue is the "master of the situation" and that "we 
must not resort to arms." The Prime Minister urged all factions to 
exercise restraint and calm, and to help "ease tension and resentment 
we must end armed rallies."

President Abbas says similar things when he addresses the public, as 
do most people and leaders, although the calls go largely unheeded 
because the underlying issues are most complex, and all the while 
external forces are manipulating the situation of a desperate public 
who, by now, is having a more difficult time seeing the forest for the trees.

Prime Minister Haniya spoke in Gaza City for over an hour and a half 
last night, doing what he could with words to decrease the chaos seen 
in the streets as members of Fateh and Hamas "turn their resistance 
weapons intended for the legitimate and internationally legal 
resistance to occupation on each other."

The Prime Minister said that the "focal point that is necessary to 
respect is the election results and how to handle them when they 
come." President Abbas of Fateh called for early elections, in part 
because the US will not lift the economic and political blockade 
until Hamas is out of office, and because talks for a unity 
government failed as Hamas would not cede points mandated by some in 
the international community and Fateh was doing the external bidding 
in some regards. And certainly, not least in the list of "why early 
elections," Fateh will be back on top, where it had been for 10 
years. Yasser Abed Rabbo said they needed three months to prepare 
themselves. And the first time the elections were to be held in the 
summer of 2005, Fateh postponed them and it was largely known they 
did this because they were not certain of a victory. And when Hamas 
was victorious in January 2006, it looked to journalists covering the 
scene around the clock that even Hamas was surprised. But since then 
the already devastated situation has gone downhill.

Hanyia did take a moment in his speech to convey what is obvious to 
so many; that this internal chaos is not limited to internal forces, 
that armed fighting amongst Palestinians is not fomented by local 
Palestinian factions alone and are in a great many instances, 
reactionary, and that the spiral into civil-war like conditions are 
also the workings of external forces who have proven themselves, and 
publicly admitted to being, enemies of the Palestinians, including 
Israel, the occupier, and the United States, the moral and financial 
supporters of the occupation.

The US called for democracy as if the Palestinian population did not 
always hold highly fair, transparent and democratic elections in all 
sectors, (see 1996, 2004 and 2006) but the US did not approve of the 
democratic choice. Therefore the US imposed an economic and political 
blockade. And now the Israeli Prime Minister says he must support 
President Abbas. The Israeli Prime Minister has never supported 
President Abbas, refusing to meet with him and referring to him as 
being the "no negotiating partner" as was the late President Arafat 
before him. The Israeli Prime Minister is not about to reach an equal 
negotiating table, but many fear what will happen at one, what sort 
of concessions the Palestinian Fateh leadership will make. The 
Israeli Prime Minister's ploy of support for the "the moderates, 
including President Abbas" is for the media. The take-over of 
Jerusalem and Al Aqsa Mosque are ongoing, as are invasions, 
incursions, arrests and assassinations. And the Israeli government 
stopped paying the taxes it owes and therefore we are unable to fully 
pay public sector employees. Many say the tactic is to starve us 
until we concede. But if the final concession is to leave our 
historic Palestine, that will never happen." Haniya also spoke to the 
existence of many "internal enemies who have their own agenda and a 
are also sowing chaos, unrest and distrust."

Hamas has also stressed the need to reform the Palestine Liberation 
Organization and pointed out that "there are American pressures 
exerted on some figures and forces to not participate in the 
Palestinian government, but we have said repeatedly that the door 
will remain open to all Palestinian factions wishing to participate 
in a government that has lived through the economic siege and 
political isolation" since the first moment this government was formed.

Accusations of corruption come from both parties, and in both Hamas 
and Fateh episodes of nepotism and corruption are easy to find, but 
the democratic choice at the polls this year was Hamas, and many of 
those who voted for them said at that the time that they did so 
because they were looking for a change from the status-quo of 
corruption in Fateh. But the Hamas member Prime Minister is still 
holding out hope for a government of national unity, as is President Abbas.

During Prime Minister Haniya's Gaza City speech he said that "with a 
basis of national consensus we can solve any problem, and we will 
with a government of national unity be able to face the embargo united."

He also called for a "return of any abductees taken from among the 
Hamas and Fateh members. Give back your brothers if you have taken 
any hostages. This is not the way."

The Minster of Interior, Hamas member Said Siyam, is conducting an 
emergency meeting with security services in a joint step to contain 
the armed rallies. And the first objective for security is to find 
the killers of the three children. I do not mind if the security 
services join operations." Hamas' Executive Forces, set-up by Siyam, 
have been on one side of the fighting, while the other side is 
Fateh's Presidential Guard and Palestinian Authority security branches.

The Prime Minister rallied, "I call upon the Palestinian people to 
reach a comprehensive national reconciliation everywhere. I was 
prepared on behalf of the government that if there was blood shed to 
pay the relatives of victims," at least as some kind of compensation 
although the spilling of our own blood with our own hands is unforgivable.

Prime Minister Haniya said more Tuesday night, but of import was his 
commitment to Palestinian political prisoners in Israeli jails, his 
admission that the Qatari Initiative failed due to President Abbas, 
and his reminder that he was willing to give up his position as Prime 
Minister for the greater good, as he did within moments of the 
beginning the discussion of new ministerial appointments in a unity 
government. The President rejected the first choice who was a Hamas 
member, and then rejected the independent who was chosen next. The 
Hamas government has had literally nothing to work with since it won 
the elections and then took office, but this not the fault of 
President Abbas. This falls squarely in the lap of the United States, 
more destructive than even the Israeli occupation has been this year. 
Prime Minister Haniya and President Abbas may say similar words 
during public speeches, (just reverse the party), but what the Hamas 
government has undergone since it took office is unprecedented in 
impossibility, even under Israeli occupation.

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