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China to host Hamas, Fatah for Palestinian unity talks


Beijing, 27 April 2024 (TDI): China will facilitate Palestinian unity talks between Hamas and Fatah, as confirmed by both groups and a Beijing-based diplomat. The discussions mark a significant Chinese engagement in Palestinian diplomacy during the ongoing conflict in Gaza.

Hamas, in control of Gaza, is the group involved in the recent incursion into Israeli territories on October 7, resulting in casualties and hostages. Israel has vowed to eliminate Hamas, leading to extensive Palestinian casualties.

Fatah, led by Mahmoud Abbas, governs the Palestinian Authority with limited autonomy in the West Bank. The two factions have unresolved disputes since Hamas ousted Fatah from Gaza in 2007.

A Fatah delegation, led by Azzam Al-Ahmed, has departed for China, while Hamas, led by Moussa Abu Marzouk, will follow suit.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin expressed support for Palestinian unity.

During a briefing, he increased dialogue among factions, even though the meeting was not officially confirmed.

This visit marks the first time a Hamas delegation has publicly gone to China since the start of the war in Gaza.

A Chinese diplomat, Wang Kejian, met Hamas chief Ismail Haniyeh in Qatar last month, according to the Chinese foreign ministry. The talks aimed to support efforts to reconcile the two Palestinian rival groups. This was said by the Beijing-based diplomat briefed on the matter.

The discussions in Beijing aim to bolster reconciliation efforts among Palestinian groups, showcasing China’s emerging role in regional diplomacy.

Chinese officials have advocated for Palestinian rights in international forums. They have been calling for a comprehensive peace conference and endorsing a two-state solution.

China’s recent efforts include urging the International Court of Justice to address the Israeli occupation of the Palestinian Territories, emphasizing the need for UN recognition of Palestine to rectify historical injustices.

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