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Thursday, 17 October 2019

Uncertainty as Palestinian PM's term ends

Deadline approaches for shoes of Palestinian PM to be filled and a unity government to be formed

AFP, Sunday 2 Jun 2013
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Outgoing Palestinian prime minister Salam Fayyad was meeting with his cabinet on Sunday evening to discuss the way forward as his term as caretaker premier formally drew to a close.

Fayyad, a political independent, resigned on 13 April after months of tension with Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas, despite US efforts to keep him in place.

He stayed on in a caretaker role which formally ends on Sunday night.

But sources in the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) said there had been no consultations on forming a new government so far.

Speaking on condition of anonymity, they said Fayyad's outgoing government would meet on Sunday evening to discuss the way forward after his term in office ended.

Following Fayyad's resignation, Abbas asked him to stay on in a caretaker role.

On 27 April, Abbas announced that consultations had started to form a unity government under his own leadership, in accordance with a long-delayed reconciliation deal between his Fatah faction and the rival Hamas Islamist movement.

Palestinian Basic Law stipulates that the person charged with forming a new government then has three weeks to choose a new lineup, which can then be extended by another two if the issue is not resolved within that timeframe.

That five-week period ends at midnight on Sunday.

Last month, Fatah and Hamas agreed to set a three month timetable for forming a unity government.

Establishing a unity government and holding elections was one of the aims of a reconciliation deal the two nationalist movements signed two years ago, but it has never been implemented.

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