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Cairo to host Abbas in mediation bid

Military meets with Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas as part of mediations between Fatah and Hamas

AFP, Saturday 2 Apr 2011

Egypt's military leadership will host Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas next week in a bid to strengthen Cairo's role as mediator between Fatah and Hamas,  MENA said Saturday.

"Egypt is intensifying its efforts on the Palestinian issue, particularly on the subject of reconciling Hamas and Fatah and finding an end to division between them," said MENA.

Abbas is due in the Egyptian capital on Wednesday for talks the next day with Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi, head of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces and Egypt's de facto leader since the ouster of president Hosni Mubarak.

Fatah and Hamas have been at loggerheads since 2007 when the Islamist movement took control of the Gaza Strip, routing Abbas loyalists. A process of reconciliation between the two is yet to yield any results.

Egypt has been a long-standing mediator between the two factions as well as between Palestinians and Israelis.

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