Gaza Rally Turnout Surprises Hamas and Fatah

Gaza Rally Turnout Surprises Hamas and Fatah | Cheerful atmosphere hints at appetite for reconciliation

The massive turnout for Fatah’s 48th anniversary rally in the Gaza Strip surprised everything, but perhaps none so much as Fatah themselves, who have had only a nominal presence in the strip since their split with Hamas years ago.

The turnout overwhelmed organizers, with so many people in the square that several speeches had to be canceled, and a number of supporters were injured from the sheer number of people bunched together in tight spaces.

Hamas okayed the rally, which was a significant concession given the two sides have been at near open warfare since 2007. Fatah officials also gave the impression of being eager in a rapprochement with Hamas.

The two factions have been talking reconciliation for awhile, but the Gaza rally, with its cheerful atmosphere, shows for the first time how broad the appetite among Gazans is for a full-scale reconciliation, and may push the parties to get a deal done.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of

  • Dadai

    Being split into factions is exactly what Israel needs. Divide and say there's no 'peace partner' to talk to. But unity won't stop them from doing what they plan to do. There is another Final Solution up the road. This time for Arabs.

  • peter vojta

    The very moment Palestine is liberated and has its own modern army to prevent any Zionist aggression, that will be THE DAY FOR CELIBRATION in 4 corners of planet Earth. It will be also day when Mankind markes BEGGINING OF UNIVERSAL PEACE….peter czech

  • tom dee

    I suspect they see Israel moving into a split society. Israel is deporting many jews because they are from Africa. That will not please many Americans who presently support Israel but if they feel that Israel is racist will not support. That will put a big political price on the power of AIPAC. I suspect Israel will try to change but I think it is too late for Israel. They will have to do a lot to change the very bad image created by bad events like operation cast Iron which saw so many children harmed by high level bombing.

  • rosemerry

    Let us hope that the Palestinians can arrange some sort of solidarity, while the Israelis run frantically to the extreme right, perhaps even enough to lose them some support. We can but hope.