Rassegna Stampa Elezioni Israeliane 2009

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Palestinian PM Fayyad steps down

Posted by gaetanoditommaso su 7 marzo, 2009

BBC NEWS

07 March 2009

Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Salam Fayyad has submitted his resignation to President Mahmoud Abbas, he said in a statement.

The move comes ahead of power-sharing talks between Mr Abbas and his rivals Hamas, who control the Gaza Strip.

Mr Fayyad’s resignation would pave the way for the formation of a national unity government, but he will not step down until that happens.

The move is being seen as conciliatory, as Hamas had demanded his departure.

The BBC’s Tim Franks in Jerusalem says Mr Fayyad’s resignation appears to be part of the careful choreography aimed at the creation of a new Palestinian government of national unity.

But he will not actually step down until that government is in place, and there is no guarantee of that, our correspondent says.

Delegations from Fatah and Hamas, as well as other Palestinian groups, have set up committees to look at forming a unity government and holding elections.

Talks have been going on in Cairo between the two sides.An early indication of progress will come at the end of this month with an initial report into the shape of a future unity government.

The new government would also co-ordinate the rebuilding of Gaza.

The divisions between Fatah and Hamas have been seen as one of the stumbling blocks to progress towards an Israeli-Palestinian peace deal.

Mr Fayyad – a former World Bank economist – says his resignation will take effect following the formation of the unity government by the end of March.

Analysts say the desire on the part of Palestinians to achieve reconciliation between their divided leaderships has grown more acute since Israel’s three-week military offensive in Gaza, which ended on 18 January.

FATAH-HAMAS RIVALRY

  • January 2006 – Hamas wins Palestinian Authority legislative election
  • March 2006 – Hamas government sworn in. US and EU suspend ties
  • February-March 2007 – Fatah and Hamas agree to form coalition to end growing factional warfare
  • June 2007 – Hamas seizes control of Gaza from Fatah after continued fighting. Unity government dissolved, Israel tightens blockade of Gaza Strip
  • Profile: Salam Fayyad

    Salam Fayyad has been sworn in as prime minister of an emergency Palestinian government.

    He is considered a liberal and widely respected among the international organisations and donors.

    Mr Fayyad worked at the World Bank in Washington from 1987-1995. He then served as the International Monetary Fund’s representative to Palestine based in Jerusalem until 2001.

    He served as the finance minister under the Fatah-controlled administration from 2002-2005 and won praise from the international community for introducing economic reform.

    He is also credited with cracking down on official corruption.

    He resigned from the cabinet in late 2005 to found and run the Third Way Bloc, an independent party. The party won two seats in the parliamentary election in January 2006.

    After the formation of the Palestinian unity government in February 2007, it was Mr Fayyad who met US diplomats and then lobbied the European Union for a resumption of aid to the Palestinian Authority.

    In April, he met US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice informally – the highest-level contact between a US official and a minister in the Palestinian unity government.

    Born in 1952 near the West Bank city of Tulkarm, he holds a PhD in economics from the University of Texas.

    He began his career teaching economics at Yarmuk University in Jordan.

    Mr Fayyad is married with three children.

    SALAM FAYYAD FACTS

  • Born in 1952 near West Bank city of Tulkarm
  • PhD in economics from the University of Texas
  • Worked at the World Bank in Washington from 1987-1995
  • IMF representative to Palestine until 2001
  • Finance minister for the Fatah-controlled administration 2002-2005
  • http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/7929927.stm

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