MOSCOW, February 7 (Itar-Tass) —— Mikhail Margelov, the chairman of the Federation Council International Affairs Committee, hopes that Mahmoud Abbas may persuade Hamas to take a milder attitude to Israel.
“The consent achieved in Qatar to appoint Mahmoud Abbas head of the government is a sign that the tough attitude of the sides to each other has been put behind, even though program aims of these forces may still differ,” Margelov told Itar-Tass on Tuesday, commenting on the signing of the agreement between the president of the Palestinian National Authority and Fatah leader, Mahmoud Abbas, and the head of the Politburo of Hamas, Khaled Mashaal, in Doha, Qatar, on February 6. “Fatah and Hamas agreed on the main thing, the acute need of unity of the Palestinian autonomy, for it is only on this basis that Palestine can strengthen its positions in the peaceful Middle East settlement,” Margelov holds. “The political rift between Fatah and Hamas affected Palestine’s level on the international scene and hampered the negotiations with Israel,” he noted.
“It should be hoped that Mahmoud Abbas will be able to persuade Hamas to take a milder attitude to Israel,” he said. In this connection he recalled that “Fatah is for negotiations with Israel and believes that in this way Palestine will be able to achieve independence.” “However, it is only after the general election due in May 2012 that it will be possible to make the conclusive judgment of the policy of united Palestine,” the head of the Federation Council committee said.