View Full Version : Abbas Signs Decree Appointing New Government: Source

06-16-2007, 08:24 PM
Abbas signs decree appointing new government: source


Published: Saturday June 16, 2007

Palestinian President Mahmud Abbas signed early Sunday a decree appointing a new emergency cabinet, a source close to the leader said.

The 11 ministers, independent experts under prime minister Salam Fayyad, are due to be sworn in by 1:00 pm (1000 GMT).

In a decree issued Thursday, Abbas sacked the coalition government of Hamas and his own secular Fatah faction and declared a state of emergency, just hours before the Islamist movement seized full control of Gaza.

Bolstered by Western and Arab backing, Abbas named independent Salam Fayyad to head an emergency cabinet, with the hope of ending a crippling Western aid boycott.

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said Sunday Israel will recognise a Palestinian government that does not include Hamas ministers.

"A Palestinian government which is not a Hamas government is a partner and we will cooperate with it," Olmert told journalists before departing for a trip to the United States.

"A new reality has been created during these past days which we haven't known during the long diplomatic efforts accompanying the evolution of the Palestinian Authority, and we have the intention of working full-tilt to seize this opportunity," he added.

The so-called Quartet of international mediators for Middle East peace -- the United States, European Union, United Nations and Russia -- offered their "full support" to Abbas Friday.

On Saturday, they recognised the "legitimacy" of Abbas' decision to sack the Hamas-led unity government and declare a state of emergency.

A senior Palestinian official told AFP on Saturday that the US government has indicated it will resume aid to the Palestinians once the new cabinet has been sworn in, but the a State Department spokeswoman in Washington said that no decision had yet been made.