Hamas to join Palestinian leadership meeting against Trump plan

Fatah and Hamas are rival Palestinian factions. Fatah’s Azzam Al-Ahmad (R) and Saleh Al-Aruri (L) of Hamas talk to journalists after signing a reconciliation deal in Cairo in 2017. (File/AFP)
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Updated 28 January 2020

Hamas to join Palestinian leadership meeting against Trump plan

  • A Hamas official confirmed the Islamists’ participation
  • The movement has been at odds with president Mahmud Abbas’s Fatah movement for years

RAMALLAH: Rival Palestinian factions Hamas and Fatah will join forces Tuesday in a rare meeting in West Bank city Ramallah against US President Donald Trump’s long-awaited peace plan, officials said.

“We invited the Hamas movement to attend the emergency meeting of the leadership and they will take part in the meeting,” senior Palestinian official Azzam Al-Ahmed said.

Hamas official Nasser Al-Din Al-Shaar confirmed he would attend the meeting, which all Palestinian factions were invited to.

“The meeting will discuss the position that must be taken (against) Trump’s plan,” Shaar said.

The Islamist rulers of Gaza have been at odds with president Mahmud Abbas’s Fatah movement for years, with Hamas representatives rarely taking part in meetings of the West Bank-based Palestinian leadership.

Later in the day, Trump was set to unveil a peace plan he hoped would solve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

The Palestinians reject the secret plan, accusing Trump of pro-Israel bias.

A series of protests are planned in both the West Bank and Gaza on Tuesday and Wednesday.


Turkish Airlines plane from Iran diverted to Ankara amid coronavirus worry

Updated 7 min 2 sec ago

Turkish Airlines plane from Iran diverted to Ankara amid coronavirus worry

  • The plane was flying from Tehran and had been scheduled to land in Istanbul

ISTANBUL: A Turkish Airlines plane flying from Iran was diverted to Ankara on Tuesday at the Turkish Health Ministry’s request, an aviation source said, and an aviation news website said one passenger was suspected of being infected by coronavirus.

Turkey’s Demiroren news agency broadcast video showing ambulances lined up beside the plane, with several personnel wearing white protective suits on the tarmac.

The plane was flying from Tehran and had been scheduled to land in Istanbul. Turkey shut its borders to Iran on Sunday and cut flights due to the spread of the virus in that country.