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US welcomes Palestinian Authority's plan for reform after government's resignation

Anadolu Agency U.S. POLITICS
Published February 27,2024

The US State Department welcomed the Palestinian Authority's intention to form a unity government after Prime Minister Mohammed Shtayyeh and his government resigned Monday.

"With respect to both the resignation and a future government, ultimately the leadership of the Palestinian Authority is a question for the Palestinians themselves to decide," spokesman Matthew Miller told reporters during a press briefing.

"But we do welcome steps for the PA to reform and revitalize itself," said Miller, referring to initials of the Palestinian Authority.

He said US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has encouraged the Palestinian Authority to take those steps in conversations with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and other officials.

"We think those steps are positive. We think that they are important, an important step to achieving a reunited Gaza and West Bank under the Palestinian Authority. So we will continue to encourage them to take those steps," Miller added.

According to the official Palestinian news agency Wafa, Abbas accepted the government's resignation and asked it to stay on in a caretaker capacity until a new cabinet is formed.

The resignation came amid talks between Palestinian factions to form a unity government as Israel continued its onslaught on the Gaza Strip.

Israel has launched a deadly offensive on Gaza since an Oct. 7 cross-border incursion by the Palestinian group Hamas, killing nearly 29,800 people and causing mass destruction and shortages of necessities, while nearly 1,200 Israelis are believed to have been killed.

The Israeli war on Gaza has pushed 85% of the territory's population into internal displacement amid acute shortages of food, clean water and medicine, while 60% of the enclave's infrastructure has been damaged or destroyed, according to the UN.

Israel stands accused of genocide at the International Court of Justice. An interim ruling in January ordered Tel Aviv to stop genocidal acts and take measures to guarantee that humanitarian assistance is provided to civilians in Gaza.

Hostilities have continued unabated, however, and aid deliveries remain woefully insufficient to address the humanitarian catastrophe.