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Palestinian President Abbas: May Resign if Peace Hampered Under Hamas

26 February 2006

Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas says he may resign if a Hamas-led government prevents him from advancing the Mideast peace process.

In a British (ITV) television interview broadcast Sunday, Mr. Abbas said Hamas must abide by existing Palestinian Authority commitments recognizing Israel and denouncing the use of violence.

He said that if he cannot continue his policies regarding Israel, he will resign.

Mr. Abbas was elected for a four-year term as president of the Palestinian Authority in January, 2005. Hamas, considered a terrorist organization by the West, wrested control of the legislature from the ruling Fatah party in parliamentary elections last month.

Hamas leader and Palestinian Prime Minister-designate Ismail Haniyeh said Sunday his militant group is ready to recognize Israel, if Israel gives the Palestinian people a state on lands occupied since the 1967 war.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and AP.

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