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PLO backs Abbas

The Palestinian Authority’s top decision-making body
endorsed Mahmoud Abbas’ dumping of Hamas.

The Palestine Liberation Organization’s (PLO) executive on
Thursday backed Abbas, who serves as its leader, as well as the emergency
Cabinet he formed after firing Hamas from the government.

The gesture was meant to shore up Abbas in the West Bank,
where his Fatah faction still holds sway. Hamas, which does not belong to the
PLO, rejected Thursday’s declaration as illegitimate.

The PLO executive also called for all Palestinian militias,
including Hamas’s Executive Force and Fatah’s Al-Aksa Brigades, to be
dismantled – a requirement of the “road map” peace plan that Abbas
never implemented. While such a crackdown could be tried in the West Bank, it is
next to impossible in Gaza, where Hamas militias appear to be in control.

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