Although the scheduled meeting between Mahmoud Abbas and Khaled Mashal in the matter of establishing a Palestinian unity government was recently cancelled over disagreement on the identity of a new Palestinian prime minister, talks between Fatah and Hamas continue on the issue of political detainees.
In the framework of the national unity agreement signed in Cairo on 4 May, both Fatah and Hamas committed themselves to cease political detentions, and to free political prisoners already detained.
On Wednesday 22 June, Ashraf Jumaa, a member of the Fatah delegation to the Palestinian unity talks in Cairo, noted that both sides exchanged lists of people they define as political prisoners held by the other side. The reconciliation agreement determines that a committee will be established to discuss these lists and decide which are indeed political prisoners who must be freed.
On Wednesday Jumaa met with mothers and wives of political prisoners from Gaza, and noted a general dissatisfaction with the pace of progress in the matter of political prisoners and their release.
In the meantime it appears that the governments controlled by both movements continue to prosecute political activists of the other side. Continue reading