Ahmad Yusuf: “Reconciliation is Not a Tactic to Avoid Revolution”

The reconciliation process between Hamas and Fatah is on going. There are signs that the two biggest factions in Palestine move toward a peace deal. It was seemed from the commitment of the PA President Mahmud Abbas who is not willing to participate in the next election. He also showed a positive gesture by his willingness to visit the Gaza Strip.

Hamas and Fatah split since June 2007 when the national unity government was dismissed. That development followed with the Israeli blockade against the Strip which has 1.5 million populations.

Speaking to Faisal Assegaf from Tempo via his mobile yesterday, a former adviser for Prime Minister Ismail Haniyah, Ahmad Yusuf said his faith that the peace deal between Hamas and Fatah will be reached by this year. Excerpts:

How is the possibility to reach a deal between Hamas and Fatah?
At this time, Hamas and Fatah are going closer toward the reconciliation and the unity. They seriously discuss about this matter.

Do you think this is the best moment?
Yes, off course, because the Palestinians wish the unity between all factions.

Or is this a tactic from Hamas and Fatah to avoid a revolution wave is spreading in the Middle East?
The on going reconciliation process has no connection with the protests are spreading among the Arab countries. We are facing different situation rather than theirs. We are in effort to achieve reconciliation because we are under occupation from Israel. We need to get the unity against the colonial.

Do you think when the peace deal will be signed?
I think in the next few weeks there will be a meeting between Prime Minister Ismail Haniyah and President Mahmud Abbas.

Where the meeting will be held?
It’s more likely in Egypt and then Haniyah and Abbas will visit the Gaza Strip.

What the matters will be discussed?
They will talk about power sharing and the unity government that are going to set up a new election.

When the new election will be held?
Perhaps next year

Do you think who will be elected as the new prime minister?
Our both sides have agreed to support candidates from technocrat, nor Hamas and Fatah.

Who are the strong candidates?
It’s too early to talk about it.

Do you believe that a revolution can emerge in Israel?
I think it is not because the Israeli system gets supports from the ultra nationalist parties. Who ever the Israeli leader, the right wing, central, or the left, they have the same goal to continue their occupation against the Palestinians.

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